Cooper EMS receives American Heart Association award for heart attack treatment

Cooper University Health Care’s Emergency Medical Services has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline EMS Gold Plus Achievement Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association for the treatment of patients who suffer severe heart attacks.

Each year in the U.S., approximately 250,000 people have a STEMI, or ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction, caused by a complete blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment.

“This recognition from the American Heart Association is a testament to the high level of professionalism of Cooper’s emergency medical technicians and paramedics and their commitment to saving lives,” Rick Rohrbach, EMS director of air and ground services at Cooper, said in a prepared statement.

The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program helps reduce barriers to prompt treatment for heart attacks — starting from when 911 is called, to EMS transport and continuing through hospital treatment and discharge.

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” Dr. Tim Henry, chair of the Mission: Lifeline Acute Coronary Syndrome Subcommittee, said. “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.”