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Gunnison Valley Health Recognized for Continued Excellence in Stroke Care

Recently, the American Heart Association recognized Gunnison Valley Health as a Bronze Level Target: Stroke recipient in their rural division. The recognition highlights the continued commitment of the health system to provide excellence in stroke care for patients in the Gunnison Valley.

To receive this recognition, hospitals must meet ten measures based on best practices and designed to ensure that patients are receiving the right care quickly in order to minimize the long-term effects of a stroke. Included in the measures are the amount of time from a patient entering the emergency department until they receive thrombolytic therapy, the time it takes to transfer to a higher level of care and the time it takes for a CT scan to be completed. For a rural hospital like Gunnison Valley Health, these measures create unique challenges and a heightened sense of responsibility for local emergency department providers.

According to Gunnison Valley Health’s Emergency Department Manager, Chris Evans, working closely with our partners and implementing the right procedures makes all the difference for patients.

“We are in a very rural location and our extreme weather can cause real challenges with transporting patients to a higher level of care,” Evans said. “By working closely with our paramedics team and CareFlight of the Rockies we are able to make life-saving transports happening in almost any circumstance.”

To receive the bronze award, hospitals must meet criteria at or above 75 percent for one calendar quarter and have at least one stroke patient within that time. Hospitals will move to higher recognition tiers the longer they are able to consistently maintain the measures.

“We are proud of the level of care we are able to offer at Gunnison Valley Health,” Evans continued. “In our rural community, doing everything possible to use our limited resources effectively and offer high quality of care is at the heart of everything we do. We are excited about this recognition and look forward to moving up to the next tier as we continue to improve stroke care at Gunnison Valley Health. Our community can help us continue this level of care by recognizing the signs of a stroke and immediately seeking the time sensitive medical care needed.”