Dr. Luis Gaitan Named Physician of the Year for Valley Baptist-Brownsville

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BROWNSVILLE –  Dr. Luis Gaitan, Neurologist and Medical Director of the Stroke Program at Valley Baptist Medical Center-Brownsville, has been named the 2010 Physician of the Year for the Brownsville hospital.

Valley Baptist’s Physician of the Year nomination process seeks input from the hospital staff on physicians who embody the “ultimate” in patient care, professionalism and courtesy to patients, their families and hospital employees.  As this year’s Physician of the Year, Dr. Gaitan is described as a physician who is “totally committed” to the team at Valley Baptist-Brownsville.

Valley Baptist-Brownsville employees reported that Dr. Gaitan never hesitates to come in, day or night, when a patient presents for evaluation.  Employees also said that Dr. Gaitan is courteous and has a great bedside manner, taking the time to explain to the patient and family the diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Gaitan, who trained at Emory University in Atlanta, is also reported to be a great teacher for the nursing staff.  “He wants the best for his patients and is willing to take the time to help the staff learn how to provide the best stroke care in the Valley,” employees stated.

It was also noted that Dr. Gaitan has been a vocal advocate for intensifying Valley Baptist’s stroke services over the past several years.  “His hard work has resulted in a stroke program that cannot be rivaled south of Austin,” employees stated.  “So many patients have returned to very fruitful lives due to our stroke program.  Dr. Gaitan’s depth of knowledge, his willingness to share that knowledge and his selfless devotion — not only to his patients but to the entire Stroke Program here at Valley Baptist-Brownsville — has no limits.”

In fact, under Dr. Gaitan’s leadership, Valley Baptist Medical Center-Brownsville has received awards for stroke care from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association for the past four years in a row.  In 2010, Valley Baptist-Brownsville and Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen were once again the only hospitals in the Valley – and two of only five hospitals in the state of Texas – to receive “Triple Recognition” awards for care of stroke, coronary artery disease, heart failure, and stroke patients under the Heart Association’s “Get With The Guidelines” program.

Also in 2010, the Texas Department of State Health Services designated Valley Baptist-Brownsville as the very first “Primary Level II Stroke Facility” in the entire South Texas area south of Houston and Austin.  And in 2009, Valley Baptist-Brownsville joined Valley Baptist-Harlingen as the first hospitals in the Valley to be certified as “Primary Stroke Centers” on the national level, by the accrediting organization for health care facilities, the Joint Commission.

Dr. Gaitan said that having a certified stroke hospital on the Texas – Mexico border is very important – something that many metropolitan areas don’t have.  “This is something great for Brownsville,” Dr. Gaitan added.  “It’s a plus for the community, because your father or grandfather could benefit from this treatment.”

Stroke is the nation’s fourth leading cause of death and a leading cause of disability, and Valley Baptist-Brownsville provides specialized life-saving stroke services — including medications that can reverse strokes in certain cases if the patient arrives soon after symptoms begin.   For more information, consult your