Categorized | Health

KCH receives ‘Get With The Guidelines’ silver award

Special to Hawaii 24/7 by Emily Mendez-Bryant | Community Relations Kona Community Hospital

Kona Community Hospital (KCH) has received the Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure Silver Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association.

The recognition signifies that Kona Community Hospital has reached an aggressive goal of treating heart failure patients with 85 percent compliance for one year to core standard levels of care as outlined by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology secondary prevention guidelines for heart failure patients.

“Receiving this award exemplifies the tremendous efforts we have put forth to ensure that we provide the best care at Kona Community Hospital,” said Earl Greenia, CEO of Kona Community Hospital. “Meeting the highest national healthcare standards has been a priority for us and we are thankful to be recognized in this area.”

Get With The Guidelines is a quality improvement initiative that provides hospital staff with tools that follow proven evidence-based guidelines and procedures in caring for heart failure patients to prevent future hospitalizations.

According to Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure treatment guidelines, heart failure patients are started on aggressive risk-reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, aspirin, diuretics and anticoagulants in the hospital. They also receive alcohol/drug use and thyroid management counseling as well as referrals for cardiac rehabilitation before being discharged.

“The full implementation of national heart failure guideline recommended care is a critical step in preventing recurrent hospitalizations and prolonging the lives of heart failure patients,” said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., Chair of the Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee and Director of the TeleStroke and Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.

“The goal of the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines program is to help hospitals like Kona Community Hospital implement appropriate evidence-based care and protocols that will reduce disability and the number of deaths in these patients,” Schwamm said. “Published scientific studies are providing us with more and more evidence that Get With The Guidelines works. Patients are getting the right care they need when they need it. That’s resulting in improved survival.”

“I am excited to share this news as it reflects Kona’s hard work and perseverance,” said Sandra Wataoka, Hawaii Director of Quality Improvement Initiatives for the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association.

“Kona Community Hospital is dedicated to making our care for heart failure patients among the best in the country. We will continue in our efforts and build off the success of this award by continued implementation of the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure program that allowed us to accomplish this goal,” said Marcy Rogers, R.N., KCH’s Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement Director.

Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure helps Kona Community’s staff develop and implement acute and secondary prevention guideline processes. The program includes quality-improvement measures such as care maps, discharge protocols, standing orders and measurement tools.

This quick and efficient use of guideline tools will enable Kona Community Hospital to improve the quality of care it provides heart failure patients, save lives and ultimately, reduce healthcare costs by lowering the recurrence of heart attacks.

According to the American Heart Association, about 5.7 million people suffer from heart failure. Statistics also each year more than 292,200 people will die of heart failure.

Founded in 1914, Kona Community Hospital is a 94-bed full-service hospital with 24-hour emergency services that supports the west region of the island of Hawaii. It is a member of the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, a special agency of the state of Hawaii established in 1996. It is fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. Kona Community Hospital is dedicated to providing and enhancing accessible comprehensive healthcare services to the West Hawaii community.

Get With The Guidelines is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that empowers healthcare teams to save lives and reduce healthcare costs by helping hospitals follow evidence-based guidelines and recommendations.

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