Local students become Stroke Champions at Piedmont Henry

Special to The Times

Piedmont Henry, in conjunction with the Henry County Fire Department, recently held Stroke Champion training for more than 100 Allied Health Students from Henry County high schools at the Academy for Advanced Studies in McDonough.

Allied Health Students from Academy for Advanced Studies learned to act F.A.S.T. when they observe someone having a stroke. Special photo

Staff members from Piedmont Henry trained students to recognize the warning signs and symptoms of a stroke, as well as the appropriate response to help save a life or prevent disability in case they notice someone having a stroke. Students also learned to act F.A.S.T - F-face (drooping) A- arm (ask person to raise them) S-speech (repeat a simple sentence) and T-time (call 9-1-1 immediately) – an acronym for ensuring optimal recovery for stroke victims.

“A stroke can happen to anyone at any age, and the quicker we recognize the symptoms and call 9-1-1, the better chance the victim has for survival and full recovery,” said Carmen Hough, clinical education coordinator at Piedmont Henry. “It is critical that we provide students with the knowledge and confidence they need to help someone in case of an emergency.”

To earn a certificate as a “Stroke Champion,” each student must educate at least 50 friends and family about the warning signs and symptoms of stroke, as well what to do if a someone starts having the symptoms, by May 1.

Recently, the hospital earned the “Get with the Guidelines – Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award,” a top honor for Stroke Program success and compliance with nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

“Henry County is in the heart of what is called the ‘Stroke Belt’ or the southeastern portion of the United States known for having an unusually high incidence of stroke,” said Jay Connelly, stroke program manager at Piedmont Henry and event trainer. “This makes the award even more significant, as it recognizes our continued commitment to improving stroke care for patients in our community.”

Hospitals must achieve 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get with The Guidelines-Stroke achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month periods and achieve 75 percent or higher compliance with five of eight Get with The Guide-lines-Stroke Quality measures to receive the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award.

For more information on services provided by Piedmont Henry Hospital, visit piedmont.org/ henry