October 4th, 2006

Great River Medical Center has earned the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations’ (JCAHO) Gold Seal of ApprovalTM certification for health-care quality in three areas: acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) care, outpatient wound management and stroke care. Great River Medical Center is the second hospital in Iowa to receive the acute myocardial infarction certification, the second hospital in the country and the first in Iowa to earn certification for outpatient wound management and the fourth facility in the state to be named a certified Primary Stroke Center.

To earn this distinction, a disease-management program undergoes an extensive on-site evaluation review by a JCAHO surveyor team once every two years. The program is evaluated against JCAHO standards through assessment of the program’s processes, the program’s ability to evaluate and improve care within its own organization, and interviews with patients and staff.

“These certifications mean Great River Medical Center does the right things and does them well for acute myocardial infarction, outpatient wound and stroke patients,” says Charles Mowll, JCAHO’s executive vice president for Business Development, Government and External Relations.

“Great River Medical Center voluntarily pursued these comprehensive, independent evaluations to enhance the safety and quality of care we provide,” says Mark Richardson, president and CEO, Great River Medical Center. “We’re very proud to achieve these distinctions for all three areas in which we applied for certification.”

JCAHO launched its Disease-specific Care Certification program in 2002. It is the first program of its kind in the country to certify disease-management programs. A list of JCAHO-certified programs is available at www.jcaho.org.

Founded in 1951, JCAHO seeks to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public through the provision of health-care accreditation and related services that support performance improvement in health-care organizations. JCAHO evaluates and accredits more than 15,000 health-care organizations and programs in the United States, including more than 7,800 hospitals and home-care organizations, and more than 7,300 other health-care organizations that provide long-term care, assisted living, behavioral health plans, integrated delivery networks and other managed care entities. In addition, JCAHO is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care.