Code STEMI drill held Monday morning

Mitch Stonecipher (second from left), Director of the Cardiac Cath Lab, discusses the Code STEMI protocol with Congressman John Rose (right), while Chelsea Rose (left), and Hillary Flatt, cardiac rehab nurse, listen.

COOKEVILLE — A mock Code STEMI held Monday at Cookeville Regional Medical Center (CRMC) involved a high-ranking elected official.

Congressman John Rose was a participant in the mock event, which was coordinated with Putnam County Mayor Randy Porter’s office and Putnam County Emergency Medical Services.

“This will give one of our federal representatives an idea of how great our heart program is here at Cookeville Regional,” said Paul Korth, Cookeville Regional CEO. “We are pleased to have him participate in this drill.”

Code STEMI started in 2006 and has been very successful in reducing the time it takes to get heart attack victims – especially those in outlying counties – the life-saving interventions they need. It is a regional protocol that empowers paramedics from surrounding counties to conduct an EKG in transit and to activate the cath team if that patient is having a heart attack, giving a 15-20 minute time frame to gather the team.

“When it comes to the heart, time is muscle,” said cardiologist Dr. Stacy Brewington.

Brewington, along with fellow cardiologist Dr. Brian Dockery, helped train area paramedics to use the protocol.

With this protocol in place, the Heart and Vascular Center has achieved an average of 56 minutes for their door-to-balloon time, well below the recognized gold standard of 90 minutes.

Following Monday’s drill, Rose toured the hospital and met with staff.

Pictured from left: Mitch Stonecipher, Cookeville Regional Cath lab director; Debbie Baker, Cookeville Regional cardiac rehab director; Hillary Flatt, cardiac rehab; Congressman John Rose; Chelsea Rose; Ricky Shelton, Cookeville Regional chief strategy officer; Dr. Stacy Brewington, cardiologist; and Paul Korth, Cookeville Regional CEO.

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