Published on December 15, 2020

Regional Program Receives AHA’s Mission Lifeline EMS Award for the Sixth Consecutive Year

Photo of the Member of the MidMichigan Medical Center - EMS and STEMI team holding the American Heart Association's Mission Lifeline EMS Gold Plus award.

Members of MidMichigan’s Regional STEMI Program (left to right): Paramedic Jay Moore, EMT-P, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Gladwin; Deanna Knopp, R.N., B.S.N., system director of MidMichigan’s Emergency Services; John Clayton, manager of MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Gladwin; Paramedic Mary Datte, EMT-P, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Gladwin; Paramedic Jamie Campbell, EMT-P, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Midland; Paramedic Stacey Rohn, EMT-P, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Midland; Michael Lauer, M.D., interventional cardiologist and director of MidMichigan’s Regional STEMI Program; and Scott Shawl, manager of MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS, Midland.

MidMichigan Medical Center – Emergency Medical Services in Midland and Gladwin, in collaboration with MidMichigan’s Regional STEMI Alert Program partners, has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® EMS Gold Plus Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks. This is the sixth consecutive year MidMichigan has received Gold Award designation.

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), which is the deadliest type of heart attack caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication.

The Mission: Lifeline initiative provides tools, training and other resources to support heart attack care following protocols from the most recent evidence-based treatment guidelines. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

Agencies that receive the Mission: Lifeline Gold Plus Award have demonstrated at least 75 percent compliance for each required achievement measure for two years. They must have also achieved a Silver or Gold Award level during the previous year.

“We are dedicated to providing the highest level of care to heart attack patients, and the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program is helping us accomplish that by establishing processes we can follow to improve care for all STEMI patients,” said Scott Shawl, manager, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS in Midland. “We are extremely proud to have received this recognition for the past six years.”

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said Tim Henry, M.D., chair of the Mission: Lifeline Acute Coronary Syndrome Subcommittee. “Since they often are the first medical point of contact, they can save precious minutes of treatment time by activating the emergency response system that alerts hospitals to an incoming heart attack patient. We applaud MidMichigan Medical Center – Emergency Medical Services for achieving this award in following evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of people who have severe heart attacks.”

MidMichigan Health’s Regional STEMI Alert Program was designed to train paramedics on how to quickly identify STEMI patients so that they can implement life-saving protocols to bypass the closest Emergency Department and take the patient to the nearest Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) Center. The program is approved for up to a 90-minute patient transport time to MidMichigan Medical Center – Midland, the nearest PCI Center. To ensure overall success of the program, MidMichigan Medical Center – EMS actively collaborates with other local EMS agencies to provide training and share best practices.

Those who would like more information on MidMichigan’s Regional STEMI Alert Program may visit www.midmichigan.org/stemi.