Fredericksburg Parent

June 2020

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20 Fredericksburg Parent and Family • June 2020 That's the reality that Dr. Arun Chhabra and the team he leads at the Primary Stroke Center at Mary Washington Hospital work under every day. Mary Washington Hospital has been a Certified Primary Stro ke Center for more than 10 years, and was recently recertified as a Primary Stroke Center for 2020-2022. That means that the Joint Commission, a globally recognized arbiter of healthcare standards, recognizes that Mary Washington Hospital has the training and proce- dures in place to ensure stroke patients receive excellent care as quickly as possible. Because as Chhabra points out, every minute that a stroke goes untreated, 1.9 million brain cells die. That's why if you or your loved one is experienc- ing symptoms of a stroke, it is critical to call 911 or get to a hospital that is equipped to provide the care you need as quickly as possible. For stroke patients, Mary Washington Hospital is constantly working to win the race against time. WRITTEN BY EMILY FREEHLING TIME is BRAIN CARE THAT IS CONSTANTLY IMPROVING Its designation as a Primary Stroke Center means Mary Washington Hospital is already triaging patients, working quickly to get blood-clot-busting medications to those who need them, providing appropriate therapies in the hospital and discharging patients with a plan to manage their risk factors. But on top of that, the hospital was recognized in 2019 with the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get with the Guidelines Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes the hospital's commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guide- lines derived from the latest scientific evidence. Among other things, it sets a high standard for the speed with which hospital staff administer the clot-busting tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA. Mary Washington Hospital was found to be able to administer this drug to 75 percent of patients in under an hour, and to 50 percent in less than 45 minutes. That is reflective of the energy that Chhabra and his team put into constantly improv- ing the level of care Mary Washington provides to stroke patients in the Fredericksburg region. That work involves regular meetings with EMS and first responders throughout the community, because the actions they take in the field can save precious time in treating patients. Chhabra has taught EMS teams to recognize large strokes that require a treat- ment called mechanical thrombectomy, so that hospital staff can be alerted immediately and begin making plans to transport those patients to VCU Medical Center. Mary Washington Hospital is working toward designation as a Thrombectomy-Capable Stroke Center—meaning it could be performing mechanical thrombectomy here in Fredericksburg as soon as next year. Sponsored Material

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