St. James Healthcare Now a Part of Montana Mission: Lifeline® Stroke

During a stroke every minute is critical, because a stroke deprives brain tissue of essential oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood, resulting in the death of brain cells. That is why delivering fast and effective care is important for those who are experiencing a stroke. Thanks to a $72,000 grant from the American Heart Association, St. James Healthcare will be able to improve stroke care as part of the Montana Mission: Lifeline® Stroke.

Mission: Lifeline Stroke aims to transform stroke care by focusing efforts on connecting all of the components of acute stroke care into a smoothly integrated system that reinforces the use of evidence-based guidelines, measures performance, identifies gaps, and engages in improvement projects at a systems level.

“The grant funds will help us improve our processes to provide the most efficient, evidence-based care to individuals who experience a stroke in Southwest Montana. We will be able to identify gaps in care by data that will be collected through the comprehensive tools provided,” said St. James Healthcare’s Stroke Program Coordinator, Kelly Brock, PT, DPT. “Additionally, being part of Montana Mission: Lifeline Stroke will allow us access to additional resources like staff and community education, along with streamlining the coordination of patient care with other hospitals in Montana.”

The stroke system of care begins with community recognition and preparedness to identify stroke and continues all the way through hospital discharge, into rehabilitation, and the initiation of secondary prevention. It brings together hospitals, ambulance services, non-transport medical first response agencies, emergency communications centers, emergency medical service regulatory and medical direction agencies, local government, local media, and payers to forge a proactive system of stroke care that saves and improves lives.

“The goal of Mission: Lifeline Stroke is to give patients in Montana the best possible chance at survival and recovery to an independent quality of life,” said Joani Guzman, American Heart Association Quality Systems Manager, Mission: Lifeline Stroke Montana. “It’s exciting to see the enthusiastic response the program is receiving from critical elements of the system throughout the state, such as St. James Healthcare. The end result will be a win for Montana stroke patients and their families.”

Mission: Lifeline Stroke will further strengthen St. James’ collaboration with stakeholders in southwest Montana, hospitals, individual ambulance services, the Montana Department of Health and Human Services, and others.

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