Barrow Receives Top Honors in Stroke Care

Barrow Neurological Institute has received some of the highest honors in stroke care from the American Stroke Association.

The 2020 Get With The Guidelines awards recognize Barrow’s commitment to meeting nationally accepted, evidence-based standards for the care of patients with stroke.

“These awards validate the efforts of the entire stroke team on behalf of our patients in achieving outstanding levels of compliance with metrics that are proven to improve the outcomes of our stroke population,” said Dr. Michael Waters, director of the Barrow Stroke Program.

Barrow earned the Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for maintaining at least 85 percent adherence to the association’s seven achievement measures. These measures not only focus on the diagnosis and treatment of stroke but also on the prevention of subsequent strokes. Hospitals receive the gold tier if they maintain this compliance for at least two consecutive years.

michael waters is a neurologist in phoenix arizona who specializes in stroke
Michael Waters, MD, PhD
Director, Stroke Program

Barrow also earned two Target: Stroke Honor Roll awards for meeting quality measures focused on reducing the time between a patient’s arrival at the hospital and treatment with either thrombolytic or endovascular therapy. These timeframes are known as “door-to-needle” and “door-to-device” times, respectively.

Every hour that a stroke is left untreated results in the loss of 120 million nerve cells and accelerates aging of the brain by 3.6 years. Time is key to preventing lasting neurological deficits and saving lives.

Thrombolytic therapy involves administering the drug tPA (tissue plasminogen activator) through an IV in the arm to dissolve the clot and restore blood flow to the brain. Endovascular therapy involves navigating a catheter and special instruments through the blood vessels in the body to remove the clot from the brain.

With door-to-needle times within 60 minutes for at least 75 percent of eligible patients, Barrow earned the Target: Stroke Honor Roll distinction.

Barrow also received the Target: Stroke Honor Roll Advanced Therapy award for endovascular treatment. For at least 50 percent of eligible patients, door-to-device times were within 90 minutes for patients coming directly to the hospital and within 60 minutes for patients transferred from another facility.

“We have an outstanding stroke team at Barrow Neurological Institute and St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center,” Dr. Waters said. “Our focus on timely, quality care is our commitment to Phoenix to provide the highest level treatment and effect the best possible outcomes for our patients.”