July 31, 2018

St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center Earns Paul Coverdell National Stroke Program Awards for Exceptional Stroke Care

Ongoing Commitment to Quality Improvement Ensures Stroke Patients Receive Better Care

BRIGHTON, MA – St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center recently earned two awards from the Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Program at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH). St. Elizabeth’s received the Defect-free Care Award and the Dysphagia Screening greater than or equal to 90% Award from the organization.

The Coverdell Defect-free Care Award recognizes hospitals that, from the period of January to December 2017, provided defect-free care to 90 percent or more of their stroke patients by utilizing all of the interventions for which each patient was eligible. Defect-free care is achieved when a patient receives the appropriate care based on clinical guidelines.  The number of Coverdell hospitals providing defect-free care to the majority of their patients has increased significantly over the last 6 years, resulting in many more patients receiving high-quality care.

The Dysphagia Screening greater than or equal to 90% Award recognizes hospitals that complete dysphagia screening on at least 90% of stroke patients from January - December 2017.

The Paul Coverdell  National Acute Stroke Program is a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) funded quality improvement collaborative administered by the DPH, that supports Primary Stroke Service hospitals.

“St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center is proud that our hard work and passion for providing great care was recognized by this prestigious award from the DPH’s Paul Coverdell Acute Stroke Program,” said Judith Hinchey, MD, Director, Stroke Program, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center. “We strive to provide exceptional care to all of our patients.”

Stroke is the fourth-leading cause of death in the Commonwealth, and a leading cause of adult disability. Immediate assessment and treatment is critical to help improve outcomes.

Knowing the key signs and symptoms of stroke and calling 9-1-1 immediately can save a life. The F.A.S.T. acronym is an easy way to remember: 

Face: Does the face look uneven? Ask the person to smile
Arm: Does one arm drift down? Ask the person to raise both arms
Speech: Does the speech sound strange? Ask the person to repeat a phrase
Time: If you observe these symptoms, call 9-1-1

For more information the Massachusetts Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Program, or about FAST and the DPH stroke awareness campaign, here:

For more information about St. Elizabeth’s Stroke Service please visit


About St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center
St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center is a major academic medical center affiliated with Tufts University School of Medicine.  Areas of medical excellence include vascular and endovascular surgery, cardiology, neurosciences, general and robotic surgery, bariatric surgery, women’s health, high-risk obstetrics, bone and joint health, hematology/oncology, pulmonary medicine and emergency medicine.  St. Elizabeth’s is a member of Steward Health Care. Visit St. Elizabeth’s online at