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Washington Regional Part of Regional System Award Recognizing Care for Heart Attacks

Washington Regional, a participant in the American Heart Association Mission: Lifeline Regional Reports, has received the Mission: Lifeline® Regional STEMI Trailblazer Achievement Award as a part of the Arkansas Region. The award is presented for implementing specific quality improvement measures at a regional level as outlined by the Association for treating patients who suffer severe heart attacks. This is the first year the Association has recognized regional achievement as part of its awards program for quality patient care.

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack, caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication.

The American Heart Association Mission: Lifeline program’s goal is to reduce system barriers to prompt treatment for heart attacks, beginning with the 9-1-1 call, to EMS transport and continuing through hospital treatment and discharge. The initiative provides tools, training and other resources to support heart attack care following protocols from the most recent evidence-based treatment guidelines and encourages EMS, STEMI Receiving Centers, STEMI Referring Hospitals and other key stakeholders coming together to implement the "optimal" STEMI System of Care.

Optimal care for heart attack patients takes coordination at the individual hospital, EMS and system level – so the American Heart Association has identified Washington Regional as a participant in the Mission: Lifeline Arkansas Region, and bestowed the Mission: Lifeline STEMI Regional Trailblazer award.

"These regions receiving the Mission: Lifeline Regional Trailblazer 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 Alice Jacobs, Professor of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine and Chair, GWTG-CAD Systems of Care Advisory Work Group.

"Washington Regional is dedicated to participating in the Mission: Lifeline Arkansas Region and to providing optimal care for heart attack patients," said Danita Mullins, Emergency Department Director at Washington Regional Medical Center. "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 continue participating in the Mission; Lifeline Arkansas Region and to continue to deliver optimal care for each heart attack patient in our region."