Source: The News-Enterprise
The start of a new year and its tradition of resolutions often causes many of us to take a hard look at our health.
Weight loss pledges and new commitments to exercise on Jan. 1 require vigilance throughout the year. It’s the type of constant attention applied year-round by Hardin Memorial Health, the area’s leading health care provider.
Back in mid-December, when preparing huge holiday meals and special candy treats dominated our personal calendars and few of us were thinking about health maintenance, Hardin Memorial was discussing advancements locally in stroke care.
Maybe strokes are not on your mind, but every 40 seconds someone in the U.S. experiences a stroke. The hospital sees between 30 and 40 stroke patients per month — that’s more than one per day.
Rosa Vittitoe, who serves in the newly created position of stroke program coordinator, said stroke treatment has improved across the nation. Early diagnosis and quick treatment is essential to recovery and HMH diagnosis statistics in its new emergency department exceed national goals.
At the hospital, within four minutes of entering the doors by ambulance with a stroke alert, a patient receives first contact with a physician, local officials say. Within 10 minutes, the initiation of a CT scan is started. The door to CT interpretation is 33 minutes.
The national standards, Vittitoe said, are 10 minutes, 25 minutes and 45 minutes, respectively.
HMH also installed perfusion scanning capability, which “allows the physician to make more accurate and timely diagnoses of treatment for our patients so they get what they need in a quicker time frame,” Vittitoe said.
It’s a lifesaving advancement. Speed matters when dealing with this debilitating and often deadly condition.
So add to your list of resolutions, developing a greater appreciation for improvements being made at HMH.
This editorial reflects a consensus of The News-Enterprise editorial board.