UAMS Stroke Program Receives Two Awards for Excellence of Care

By Spencer Watson

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association honored UAMS with the Get with the Guidelines Target: Stroke Honor Roll and Gold Plus Quality Achievement awards in June. The awards recognize the hospital’s commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

The Target: Stroke Honor Roll recognition acknowledges the program’s compliance with standards for quick and timely treatment of stroke. The Gold Plus status recognizes the program’s continued high performance by those measures for two or more consecutive years after receiving a Gold or Silver award. UAMS has maintained the Gold Plus status for six consecutive years.

“Our staff has worked very hard for many years first to achieve and then to continue to receive this recognition,” said Matthew Mitchell, M.N.Sc., R.N., director of the Stroke Program. “We want our patients to have the very best outcomes, and this recognition speaks to our efforts to follow the guidelines and standards of practice that ensure the best results for them.”

In 2018, UAMS Medical Center became the first and only health care provider in Arkansas to be certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center by The Joint Commission. The Joint Commission is an independent, nonprofit organization that evaluates and accredits more than 20,000 health care organizations in the United States.

According to The Joint Commission, the certification is the most demanding accreditation and is designed for those hospitals that have the specific abilities to receive and treat the most complex stroke cases.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

UAMS is the state’s only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and eight institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute, Institute for Digital Health & Innovation and the Institute for Community Health Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS’ clinical enterprise. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,275 students, 890 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 12,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children’s, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), YouTube or Instagram.