NCH Stroke Program Earns Key Award for Quality of Care

Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights has received the “Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award” from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association. The designation puts NCH among the nation’s top hospitals for providing aggressive, proven stroke care.

“When a person suffers a stroke, time lost is brain lost,” said Janice Lau, stroke program coordinator. “We strongly adhere to evidence-based guidelines that give patients the best chance of making a full recovery.”

To receive the award, hospitals must achieve an 85 percent compliance with all Get With The Guidelines indicators for two consecutive 12-month intervals, and a 75 percent compliance with six of 10 stroke quality measures. The measures include aggressive use of medications and smoking cessation, all aimed at reducing death and disability while improving the lives of stroke patients.

Strokes are the leading cause of disability in the United States, and the third-leading cause of death. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, and someone dies of a stroke every four minutes.

Northwest Community Hospital is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients,” said Dr. Lee Schwamm, chair of the Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee.

For more than four years, NCH has been designated a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission, meaning that the hospital’s stroke care encompasses all the critical elements to achieve long-term success in improving stroke outcomes. Rapid diagnostics and interventions at NCH play key roles in restoring patients to their maximum level of functioning.

“We have a broad number of advanced tools we can offer our patients who have suffered a stroke, an aneurysm or any of a host of other serious neurological conditions,” said Dr. Laura Goldstein, chief of Neurology.

For more information about Northwest Community Hospital’s award-winning stroke services, visit