Top honors: St. Joseph Hospital earns American Heart Association award

Courtesy photo Khawaja Rahman, MD and Kristina DeBruin, BSN, RN, Stroke Program Coordinator.

St. Joseph Hospital, a member of Covenant Health, is proud to announce it has earned the American Heart Association’s/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines – Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes the hospital as among the best in New Hampshire for ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines, which are based on the very latest scientific evidence.

St. Joseph Hospital also received the associations’ Target: StrokeSM Elite Award. To qualify for this recognition, the hospital is required to meet quality measures developed to reduce the time between the patient’s arrival and treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, which is the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke.

“This recognition from the American Heart Association further validates our commitment to delivering advanced stroke treatment to patients quickly and safely,” said Kristina DeBruin, BSN, RN, stroke program coordinator for St. Joseph Hospital. “Most importantly, the tools and resources this program provides help us track and measure our success in meeting evidenced-based clinical guidelines developed to improve patient outcomes.”

“We are pleased to recognize St. Joseph Hospital for their commitment to stroke care,” said Eric E. Smith, M.D., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and an associate professor of neurology at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. “Research has proven that hospitals adhering to clinical measures through the Get With The Guidelines quality improvement initiative often see fewer readmissions and lower mortality rates.”

Research indicates stroke is a leading cause of death and adult disability in the United States. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year. To learn more about St. Joseph Hospital’s Stroke Care, visit