HHH receives American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines Silver Performance Achievement Award 
 September 2008

Hilton Head Hospital recently received the American Heart Association’s Get With The GuidelinesCoronary Artery Disease (GWTGCAD) Silver Performance Achievement Award. The award recognizes Hilton Head Hospital’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of cardiac care that effectively improves treatment of patients hospitalized with coronary artery disease. 

Under GWTGCAD, patients are started on aggressive risk reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, aspirin, ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers in the hospital and receive smoking cessation/ weight management counseling as well as referrals for cardiac rehabilitation before they are discharged. Hospitals that receive the GWTG-CAD Silver Performance Achievement Award have demonstrated for at least one year that 85 percent of its coronary patients (without contraindications) are discharged following the American Heart Association’s recommended treatment guidelines. 

“The American Heart Association applauds Hilton Head Hospital for its success in implementing the appropriate evidence-based care and protocols to reduce the number of recurrent events and deaths in cardiovascular disease patients,” said Gregg C Fonarow, M.D., National Chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and Director of Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center. Hilton Head Hospital has achieved a high level of performance in terms of implementing these life-prolonging treatments.”

“Hilton Head Hospital is dedicated to making our cardiac unit among the best in the country, and the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines program is helping us accomplish that by making it easier for our professionals to improve the long-term outcomes of our cardiac patients,” said Kelly Presnell, hospital spokesperson. “We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in cardiac care.”

The American Heart Association’s GWTG program is designed to increase the use of and adherence to the association’s secondary prevention guidelines for coronary artery disease. Developed to assist healthcare professionals follow proven standards and procedures before patients are discharged, GWTG–CAD can help Hilton Head Hospital reduce the risk of recurrent heart attacks and death in treated patients. The program mobilizes teams in acute care hospitals to implement American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology secondary prevention guidelines.

According to the American Heart Association, approximately 565,000 people suffer a new heart attack and 300,000 experience a recurrent heart attack each year. Statistics also show that within one year of a heart attack, 18 percent of men and 23 percent of women will die. Within five years after an attack, about 33 percent of men and 43 percent of women will die. 

The American Heart Association’s GWTG program is being implemented in hospitals around the country.