Hospital recognized with national awards for stroke and cardiology programs

June 18, 2014 By Kimberly Gensicki

New Britain [June 18 2014] - The Hospital of Central Connecticut (HOCC) has been recognized nationally with three awards related to its stroke and cardiology programs. 

HOCC received the Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award and its Heart Failure Bronze Quality Achievement Award after implementing key quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association (AHA)/American Stroke Association and American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation, respectively. 

In addition, the hospital received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® Bronze Plus Receiving Quality Achievement Award for implementing quality improvement measures to treat ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) heart attacks. 

“We are thrilled and honored to receive these awards as they reflect the hard work of our staff,” says Justin Lundbye, M.D., FACC, chief of Cardiology. “This award further highlights the excellent care we deliver.” 

Among implemented AHA quality improvement measures for heart failure diagnosis and treatment at HOCC, which has a dedicated Heart Failure Resource Center, are proper use of medications and aggressive risk reduction therapies like cholesterol-lowering drugs, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, aspirin, diuretics and anticoagulants for hospitalized patients. The center provides resources to help heart failure patients and families become active participants in their health care. Patients visiting the center receive a cardiovascular exam, heart failure education and emotional and social support. About 5.1 million people suffer from heart failure, according to the AHA. 

HOCC follows AHA guidelines for STEMI heart attack patients, who require immediate treatment through clot-busting medication or an angioplasty procedure to clear blood flow blockage to the heart. AHA’s criteria and performance standards for STEMI patients include aggressive risk reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, aspirin, ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers, as well as smoking cessation counseling, if needed. HOCC’s designation as a STEMI receiving hospital by the State of Connecticut means patients have a 90 minutes or less Door to balloon (D2B) time. HOCC's mean D2B time, at 61 minutes, is one of the lowest in Central Connecticut and Greater Hartford and consistently lower than recommended guidelines, according to Lundbye. 

Stroke quality improvement measures used by HOCC include medications and risk-reduction therapies aimed at reducing death and disability and improving patients’ lives. From AHA and the American Stroke Association the hospital also received the Target: Stroke Honor Roll, having met quality measures aimed at reducing time between hospital arrival and treatment with tPA, a clot-dissolving medication. When tPA is given within three hours of stroke symptom onset, patients may have a quicker recovery and are less likely to suffer severe disability. A stroke occurs about every 40 seconds, with death from a stroke occurring every four minutes, according to the AHA/American Stroke Association. 

“We’re very proud that our hospital’s approach to stroke has been recognized in this way. Stroke is a complicated disease with many different faces and many different causes,” says Timothy Parsons, M.D., HOCC Stroke Center medical director. “HOCC strives to not only provide award-winning standard care but to go to the next level by formulating individualized workups and treatment plans so that every patient achieves their best possible recovery and lowest possible risk of future stroke.” 

HOCC’s Stroke Center has advanced certification as a Primary Stroke Center from The Joint Commission. The Stroke Center treats patients who have had strokes or TIAs and educates patients about strokes, including risk factors. For information on stroke prevention and treatment, call HOCC's stroke coordinator, 860-224-5900, X6764. 

About Get With The Guidelines 
Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that provides hospitals with the latest research-based guidelines. Developed with the goal of saving lives and hastening recovery, Get With The Guidelines has touched the lives of more than 4 million patients since 2001. For more information, visit or 

About The Hospital of Central Connecticut 
The Hospital of Central Connecticut (HOCC) is a 414-bed, 32-bassinet acute care teaching hospital with two campuses, New Britain General and Bradley Memorial in Southington. A member of Hartford HealthCare, HOCC services include emergency, inpatient, surgery, laboratory, outpatient, and radiology. Among specialty areas are cardiovascular care, metabolic health, obstetrics, oncology, orthopedics, and psychiatry/behavioral health. For more information, please visit; for a physician referral, call 1-800-321-6244.