Mountainside Receives National Award for Stroke Care

June 17, 2011 03:58 PM
Mountainside Hospital has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Awardin its first full year of eligibility. The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment and success in ensuring that the care received by its stroke patients meets nationally accepted standards and recommendations.
A recognition event will be held at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, June 21.  Representatives from the American Heart Association will be on hand to present the award.  In addition, Mountainside will be acknowledged, along with other award winners, at national and international medical conferences, in US News & World Report’s “Best Hospitals” issue in July and in AHA/ASA ads in the journals, Circulation and Stroke.
“This award, along with other recent milestone achievements, vividly underscores the caliber of the talented, dedicated physicians, nurses and other professionals associated with our hospital,” said John Fromhold, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mountainside Hospital.
“Cerebral vascular disease, the underlying cause of strokes, is one of the top reasons for hospitalization in this state and we’re committed to providing our community with the finest quality prevention, urgent care and rehabilitation services,” he said. “Time is of the essence when a stroke occurs and we’re proud to offer swift access to treatment options that save lives and reduce the extent of disabilities caused by strokes.”   
In 2009, Mountainside obtained certification as a Primary Stroke Center from the New Jersey Department of Health and joined a stroke care network created under the Primary Stroke Center Act. The goal of that legislation, enacted in 2004, is to ensure that a rapid, appropriate response to stroke emergencies is no more than 30 minutes away from any resident.
The number of stroke patients treated at Mountainside has increased dramatically since the hospital enhanced its capabilities and became a Primary Stroke Center. Under the leadership of Dr. David Blady, a board-certified neurologist and Stroke Committee Chairman, Mountainside’s capabilities include an acute stroke team available around the clock to treat patients within 15 minutes of their arrival or identification; telemetry and critical care beds for stroke patients; and acute care rehabilitation services.  
“This award signifies that our stroke team is skilled in the use of the most current, rapid and effective diagnosis and treatment protocols,” said Dr. Blady. Mountainside’s multidisciplinary Stroke Committee encompasses physicians who are board-certified in a range of specialties including neurology and emergency medicine; Stroke Coordinator Amy Paolella, RN, BSN, and other nurses; rehabilitation therapists; radiology technicians; pharmacists; and the hospital’s community health coordinator.   All team members have successfully completed specialized training and participate in continuing education to keep their skills current. All of the hospital’s nurses and some ancillary staff are required to complete stroke education and awareness programs, as well.
 “For many people, stroke risk can be identified and controlled through routine cholesterol level, blood pressure, pulse and carotid artery checks that result in early intervention,” Blady said.  “In fact, Mountainside offers monthly stroke screenings at the hospital and in other community settings.”  For further information about upcoming screenings, refer to the events schedule online at
Warning signs of a stroke
It’s important for everyone to know the following warning signs of a stroke, Dr. Blady said, and immediate medical attention should be sought whenever one or more of these symptoms occur:
·        Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, an arm or leg or one side of the body
·        Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding others
·        Sudden trouble seeing involving one or both eyes
·        Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
·        Sudden severe headache with a no known cause


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