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Washington Regional Nationally Recognized for Role in Providing Quality Care for Severe Heart Attacks

Washington Regional Medical Center has earned the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® Regional STEMI Achievement Award for its commitment to offering rapid and research-based care to people across the region experiencing the most severe form of heart attacks.

Each year, more than 250,000 people experience a severe and time-sensitive type of heart attack known as an ST elevation myocardial infarction, or STEMI. STEMI heart attacks are caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart and require timely treatment. To prevent death, it is critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible by either mechanically opening the blocked vessel or using clot-busting medication.

Mission: Lifeline is the American Heart Association's national initiative to advance the system of care for patients with high-risk, time-sensitive disease states, such as severe heart attacks. The program helps reduce barriers to prompt treatment for heart attacks – starting from when 911 is called, to EMS transport and continuing through hospital treatment and discharge.

Optimal care for heart attack patients takes coordination across the system of care and includes the individual hospital, EMS and health care system. The American Heart Association recognizes Washington Regional as a participant in the Mission: Lifeline Arkansas region, which consists of five hospitals and their supporting EMS services.

“This award highlights Washington Regional’s dedication to participating in the Mission: Lifeline Arkansas region and collaborating with area heath systems, EMS agencies and other supporting systems to provide optimal care for heart attack patients,” said Zubair Ahmed, MD, Washington Regional’s medical director of interventional cardiology. “We are pleased to be a part of a Mission: Lifeline STEMI system of care recognized for its collective dedication and achievements in cardiac care. Our goal is to further Washington Regional’s mission of improving the health of people in the communities we serve by continuing to deliver optimal care for each heart attack patient in our region.”

“The regions receiving the Mission: Lifeline regional award are pioneers in STEMI systems of care implementation and are leading the way in care coordination, use of evidence-based care guidelines and coming together to assure a high-quality functioning STEMI system of care,” said James G. Jollis, M.D., volunteer for the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines® - Coronary Artery Disease Systems of Care Advisory Work Group and cardiologist with The Christ Hospital Physicians – Heart & Vascular in Cincinnati.

The Mission: Lifeline achievement award is earned by agencies that demonstrate a commitment to treating patients according to the most up-to-date research-based guidelines as outlined by the American Heart Association.