Published on June 04, 2014

Baptist Golden Triangle receives Heart Association Award

COLUMBUS, MISS., — Baptist Memorial Hospital – Golden Triangle has received the American Heart Association's Mission: Lifeline® Receiving Center – Silver Plus Level Recognition Award. The award is based on how well the hospital met certain Mission Lifeline compliance criteria for the treatment of patients who suffer a severe heart attack known as a STEMI based on data submitted for the 2013 calendar year.

Every year almost 300,000 people experience a STEMI, a type of heart attack caused by a complete blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it is critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by opening the blocked vessel or by giving clot-busting medication.

To receive the Mission: Lifeline® Silver Award the hospital must meet eight quality measures at least 85 percent of the time with no single measure falling below 75 percent over a 12 month period.

One of the criteria involves how fast the patient gets from the door of the emergency room to having blood flow restored. The national goal is less than 90 minutes. In 2013, Baptist Golden Triangle's average door-to-device time was 52 minutes, according to Sherry Elmore, RN, director of cardiac services.

Other criteria involve the patient receiving aspirin, a beta blocker, cholesterol lowering medications and/or smoking cessation counseling either while in the hospital or when they are discharged home.

To receive the Silver 'Plus' distinction, the facility must meet one additional, stricter measure, Elmore said. When a patient having a STEMI first goes to an emergency room at any hospital in the surrounding area and is then transferred to Baptist Golden Triangle, Baptist has only 120 minutes or less to get blood flow restored in that patient, starting from the time they arrived at the initial ER, she explained. "Our average time is 107 minutes," said Elmore.

"I am extremely proud of all of our hospital staff for helping to consistently meet these quality critera to reach Lifeline® Receiving Center – Silver status," said Baptist Golden Triangle Administrator Paul Cade. "We especially congratulate our cardiac team, from the EMTs in the field, to the ER staff to our cardiologists, to the cath lab team for getting blood flowing in those STEMI patients so quickly and pushing us up to the Silver 'Plus' status, he added.

Elmore agreed that the Silver Plus designation is due to the quick actions of the hospitals ambulance department, cardiologists, emergency room and cath lab teams.

"Everybody is dedicated to this program. They treat every patient as if he or she was their own family member," she said "Someone once said 'to do great work you have to love your job.' Their dedication in the delivery of timely care proves just that," she added.

Baptist offers a wide range of cardiology services, from complete diagnostic services to open heart surgery, including an accredited Cardiac Rehab program for continued care after discharge.

With 315 beds, Baptist Golden Triangle is the largest regional hospital affiliated with the Memphis, Tenn.-based Baptist Memorial Health Care system. More than 100 physicians and surgeons, who represent almost every medical specialty, practice at the hospital, which offers a full range of comprehensive medical care to patients of all ages.

The hospital offers a variety of services to the community, including the Baptist Cancer Center-Golden Triangle, Baptist Behavioral Health Care-Golden Triangle for those with behavioral and mental health problems, an extensive rehabilitation department, and educational programs. Baptist Golden Triangle employs more than 1,000 health care professionals.

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