When you’re having a stroke, you’re supposed to act fast because not only can it save your life but also play a huge role in recovery. You need to get to the emergency room as soon as possible since stroke treatment is time-dependent, and time is brain. It’s also important for healthcare workers to act fast too.

Rachel Talley, the RN stroke coordinator at Comanche County Memorial Hospital, said when they get an alert from EMS, a code stroke is initiated, and the Emergency Room is prepared.

“Everyone is ready to go,” she said. “[They’re] taking notes, ordering tests, asking those questions, looking at your home medications, getting the blood drawn. It’s a huge team effort to make sure all of this is done in a timely manner, so we can get you a door to drug time in less than 60 minutes.”

Doctors and nurses are put up against the clock because they only have so long to give a patient clot-busting medicine. Comanche County Memorial Hospital recently got an award from the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association for its quality stroke care. Last year they got the bronze award, and this year they received silver.

“So, this is quality and performance improvement reporting and maintaining quality measures above a certain benchmark for 12 consecutive months,” she said.

Talley said it means a lot to be nationally recognized and shows their level of teamwork.

“I mean, everyone has our backs, and we work really hard to provide that excellent care despite the enormous challenges we’ve been faced with recently,” Talley said.

So, what does this mean for the medical staff who work there and the community?

“We are part of an elite group of hospitals recognized for outstanding stroke excellence. Providing a continuum of care from the time the patient is admitted whether they’re a qualifier for that clot-busting drug TPA through the hospital stay and discharge to rehab and follow up care,” she said.

While the hospital is excited about this award, they’re hoping to get the gold award next year, which requires 24 consecutive months instead of the 12 they just completed. They were also recognized as the best ranking hospitals for stroke by U.S. News & World Report.