June 21, 2021

Saint Anne’s Hospital receives national awards for stroke care

Coverdell Stroke Program awards recognize Saint Anne’s commitment to quality stroke care

Fall River, MA – June 21, 2021 – Saint Anne’s Hospital has earned two awards for stroke care from the Massachusetts Paul Coverdell Stroke Program/Hospital Quality Improvement Collaborative.

  • The Coverdell Stroke Systems of Care Partnership Award is awarded to hospitals that have established a formal partnership with Emergency Medical Services and/or post-acute facilities.
  • The Modified Rankin Scale Award reflects a scale greater than or equal to 95% of patients who have a modified Rankin score documented at the time of discharge. The Rankin Scale measures the degree of disability or dependence in the daily activities of people who have suffered a stroke or other causes of neurological disability.

“We are pleased to that Saint Anne’s Hospital has been recognized for several years in a row by the Coverdell Stroke program for our commitment to stroke care,” said Saint Anne’s Hospital President Michael Bushell.

“We know that rapid care by EMS providers at the onset of symptoms is a critical and often life-saving factor,” said Bushell. “Thanks to advanced technology that links EMS with our Emergency Department, patients can begin to get the care they need while in transit, while our emergency team is in constant contact and can initiate hospital care as soon as they do arrive.  We’re proud of the vital link between EMS providers and our emergency specialists and the critical care that our emergency and inpatient teams provide to these patients.”

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of 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.

Since 2005, Saint Anne’s Hospital has been designated as a Primary Stroke Service Provider from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. The distinction means that the hospital ensures emergency diagnostic and therapeutic services by a multidisciplinary team, 24 hours day, seven days a week, to patients presenting with signs of acute stroke. 

About the Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Program

The Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Program is funded by The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) through a competitive application process.  Massachusetts has been funded since 2001. The initial prototype phase was used to determine how best to develop stroke quality improvements registries, identify which data elements could and should be collected, and identify challenges involved in data collection.  In the 2004 to 2007 project period, the primary stroke service designation was initiated in Massachusetts, which was one of four states at that time involved in the Coverdell program.

Understanding stroke

The American Heart Association defines stroke as a cardiovascular disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts. When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs, so it starts to die. When a stroke occurs and blood flow can't reach the region that controls a particular body function, that part of the body won't work as it should.

Knowing the key signs and symptoms of stroke and calling 9-1-1 immediately can save a life. The F.A.S.T. acronym is an easy way to remember: 

  • Face: Does the face look uneven? Ask the person to smile.
  • Arm: Does one arm drift down? Ask the person to raise both arms.
  • Speech: Does the speech sound strange? Ask the person to repeat a phrase.
  • Time: If you observe these symptoms, call 9-1-1.

For more information about stroke, please visit: