Georgetown Community Hospital Awarded Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification from The Joint Commission

November 19, 2019

Georgetown Community Hospital (GCH) has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Stroke Association’s Heart-Check mark for Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification.

Georgetown Community Hospital underwent a rigorous onsite review on October 21, 2019. The Joint Commission reviewer possesses extensive clinical experience in acute stroke diagnosis and management. During the visit, the reviewer evaluated compliance with related certification standards including program process management as well as policies and procedures to facilitate guideline-based assessment and treatment. Joint Commission standards are developed in consultation with health care experts and providers, measurement experts and patients. The reviewer conducted onsite observations and interviews with GCH physicians, nurses and patient care staff as part of the evaluation process.

“Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification recognizes health care organizations committed to fostering continuous quality improvement in patient safety and quality of care,” says Mark Pelletier, RN, MS, chief operating officer, Accreditation and Certification Operations, and chief nursing executive, The Joint Commission. “We commend Georgetown Community Hospital for using certification to reduce variation in its clinical processes and to strengthen its program structure and management framework for stroke patients.”

“We congratulate Georgetown Community Hospital for this outstanding achievement,” says Nancy Brown, chief executive officer, the American Stroke Association. “This certification reflects its commitment to providing the highest quality of care for stroke patients.”

“Earning Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our clinical team, our community partners and The Joint Commission, who have been working collaboratively to ensure our hospital is prepared to provide high quality care to patients when brain attacks strike,” said William Haugh, Georgetown Community Hospital chief executive officer. “Georgetown Community Hospital’s top priority is to provide quality healthcare close to home, and this accomplishment demonstrates one of the many ways we continually work to enhance and improve our service.”

To become a certified Acute Stroke Ready Hospital, Georgetown Community Hospital engaged in thorough evaluation by The Joint Commission for its ability to access, diagnose and treat patients who may be experiencing a stroke. To Scott County and surrounding areas, this means that processes are in place that meet strict criteria aimed at:

  • Reducing the time from onset of symptoms to diagnosis and treatment
  • Treating patients more quickly during the critical window of time when the integrity of the brain can be preserved
  • Monitoring patients when it is not certain that they are having a stroke to ensure that they are not sent home too quickly or needlessly admitted to the hospital

Georgetown Community Hospital addresses the entire continuum of care for the stroke patient, including important areas such as dispatch, Emergency Medical System (EMS), emergency department, radiology staff, rehabilitation specialists and Georgetown Community Hospital’s community outreach program. By becoming a certified Acute Stroke Ready Hospital, Georgetown Community Hospital has enhanced the quality of care for the stroke patient and has demonstrated its commitment to higher standards.

“People tend to wait when they think they might be having a stroke, and that’s a mistake,” said Donna Davis, Georgetown Community Hospital chief nursing officer. “The average patient arrives in the emergency department more than two hours after the onset of symptoms, but what they don’t realize is that the sooner a stroke is treated, the less damage to the brain and the better the outcome for the patient. With our new certification, we hope to bring greater awareness to the importance of timely care and help even more people in Scott County and the surrounding area.”

For more information, please visit The Joint Commission website.