Mercy Health – Willard Hospital has enhanced stroke patient care through the addition of tele-stroke technology, made possible through the generosity of donors to the Mercy Health – Foundation.
The tele-stroke device uses two-way audio and video technology, allowing a physician in Willard to consult with a stroke specialist, located at the Mercy Health – Neuroscience Institute in Toledo. This collaboration between physicians will offer the patient a comprehensive evaluation and exam during a time when even seconds count.
When a patient arrives at the Emergency Department with stroke-like symptoms, the physician and staff will provide an immediate evaluation, including a CT scan of the brain. With the addition of the tele-stroke equipment, the next steps will involve consulting with an offsite stroke specialist, allowing both physicians to discuss the patient’s history, symptoms, CT results and treatment options.
Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States and the leading cause of permanent disability. Every minute during a stroke, 1.9 million brain cells die so timely diagnosis and treatment is key to getting the best outcome possible for patients.
Stroke caused by a blood clot is most prevalent, accounting for 85% of strokes. This type of stroke often times can be treated with a clot busting medication to dissolve the clot. The timeframe to give this medication is within 4.5 hours since the time the patient was last known to be well. Time is crucial and the tele-stroke device will expedite the physician’s decision making and administration of the medication.
Additionally, the device will allow the stroke specialist to determine if the patient would benefit from a clot removal procedure and therefore transported to The Mercy Health - Neuroscience Institute on the campus of Mercy Health - St. Vincent Medical Center. The stroke specialist can ready the team while the patient is being transported.
Recently, staff members of Mercy Health - Willard were trained to use the tele-stroke device and the process of activating the consult. Mercy Health - Willard staff and board members had an opportunity to meet Eugen Lin, MD, and Sam Zaidat, MD, endovascular interventionalists from the Mercy Health - Neuroscience Institute. Although the tele-stroke device will be located in the Emergency Department, it can be used on patients anywhere in the hospital.
“We are very grateful to the Mercy Health Foundation - Willard and the donors who support us for making the addition of this state-of-the art equipment possible,” said Lynn Detterman, president, Mercy Health – Toledo Rural Market. “Together we are changing lives forever, mind, body and spirit.”
Symptoms of a stroke can be easily remembered by thinking FAST! F- facial drooping, A- arm weakness, S- speaking difficulty and T- time to call 911!
For more information about how you can make a difference through the Mercy Health -Foundation, call the Foundation office at (419) 964-5105.