MeritCare 1st in ND to Receive Recognition for Unique Heart Care

MeritCare Medical Center recently qualified for the American Heart Association's Mission: Lifeline Bronze Performance Achievement Award. The award recognizes MeritCare's commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients that significantly improves the survival and care of STEMI (ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction) patients.

Contact: MeritCare Media Relations, (701) 234-2000 or (800) 437-4010, pager 1715

(Fargo, ND) - MeritCare Medical Center recently qualified for the American Heart Association's Mission: Lifeline Bronze Performance Achievement Award. The award recognizes MeritCare's commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients that significantly improves the survival and care of STEMI (ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction) patients.

Every year, almost 400,000 people experience a STEMI type of heart attack. Unfortunately, a significant number don't receive prompt treatment, which is critical in restoring blood flow. Mission: Lifeline seeks to save lives by closing the gaps that separate STEMI patients from timely access to appropriate treatments. Mission: Lifeline focuses on improving the system of care for these patients while improving care for all heart attack patients.

Hospitals involved in Mission: Lifeline strive to improve care in both acute treatment measures and discharge measures. Systems of care are developed that close the gap of timely access to appropriate, life-saving treatments. Before they are discharged, appropriate patients are started on aggressive risk reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, aspirin, ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers in the hospital and receive smoking cessation counseling. Hospitals that receive the Mission: Lifeline Bronze Performance Achievement Award have demonstrated for 90 consecutive days that at least 85 percent of eligible STEMI patients are treated within specific time frames upon entering the hospital and discharged following the American Heart Association's recommended treatment guidelines.

The Bronze Performance Achievement Award is the highest honor one can receive the first year of recognition. For more information, visit heart.org/missionlifeline and heart.org/quality.

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