• Stroke Care Excellence Award

    For the third consecutive year, Eisenhower Medical Center is the recipient of the prestigious HealthGrades Stroke Care Excellence Award™. HealthGrades® is a leading independent ratings organization, and the new award is one of several Eisenhower has received over the past several months. Recently, Eisenhower received the HealthGrades 2008 Distinguished Hospital Award for Clinical Excellence™ and the 2008 Distinguished Hospital Award for Patient Safety™, making it one of only 80 of the nearly 5,000 hospitals in the country to receive both awards.

    The HealthGrades Stroke Care Excellence Award™ is given annually to the top ten percent of United States stroke care providers. The Eisenhower Stroke Center has been a member of this elite group for three years in a row, receiving the award in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Eisenhower has also received a Five-Star rating, the highest given by HealthGrades, for treatment of stroke for five consecutive years (2005 – 2009).

    The HealthGrades Stroke Care Excellence Award™ is part of the HealthGrades Specialty Excellence Award, which analyzes and assigns star ratings for various medical conditions or procedures. The top 10 percent of hospitals within each specialty area are selected to be HealthGrades Specialty Excellence Award™ recipients. To determine the rankings, HealthGrades analyzes Medicare inpatient data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as well as specialty inpatient data.

    Stroke, or “Brain Attack,” is the nation’s number three killer (behind heart disease and cancer) and the number one physical disabler in the world. The older one becomes, the higher the risk of stroke, but strokes can happen at any age. A stroke is an interruption of blood flow, where a clot, or break in an artery or a vessel, occurs in or around the brain. Crucial brain cells are deprived of blood, which contains vital oxygen and nutrients, and the cells begin to die within a few minutes.

    Eisenhower Medical Center is uniquely qualified to treat stroke. It is the only hospital in the Coachella Valley that has the ability to treat stroke at the source—inside the brain—often reversing or reducing the devastating effects of stroke. The Stroke Center’s multidisciplinary Acute Stroke Team includes Neurologists, Interventional Neuroradiologists, Hospitalists, Nurse Practitioners and Emergency Physicians. All are trained to assess and treat acute ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, caused by blood clots that block blood flow to the brain.

    Time is of the essence in treating stroke, and treatment within the first three hours after suffering a stroke is critical to recovery. The Stroke Center team is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and uses state-of-the-art imaging of the arteries in the brain, as well as the National Institutes of Health’s Stroke Scale to begin an immediate assessment for stroke. Innovative treatments include the use of a powerful clot-dissolving drug, tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), which can be an effective treatment for some acute ischemic stroke patients. Eisenhower Medical Center is the only hospital in the Coachella Valley to offer a highly specialized intra-arterial tPA procedure, which delivers tPA directly to the blood clot in the brain.

    For more information on the Eisenhower Stroke Center, please visit http://www.emc.org/neuro.

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