Stroke Care - Services

Washington Health System Orthopedics and Neurosciences consistently follows the stroke guidelines developed by the American Stroke Association. These guidelines ensure that patients, once admitted, are treated and discharged appropriately. Alignment with these guidelines is a critical step in saving the lives and improving outcomes of stroke patients.

Washington Health System Orthopedics and Neurosciences offers a complete continuum for stroke care, from prevention education to rapid diagnosis and treatment to follow-up care.

A stroke occurs when one of the arteries to the brain is blocked or bursts. As a result, part of the brain does not get the blood it needs and starts to die. If you suspect someone is having a stroke, call 911 immediately. Treatment can be more effective if given early. Also, if possible, note the time of the first symptom--this may affect later treatment options. Click here for information on identifying stroke symptoms.

Washington Health System Washington Hospital is a primary stroke center and is committed to transportation, assessment, diagnosis, and treatment within three hours of symptom onset.

Coordinated care with emergency medical services (EMS) ensures that treatment begins in the field. EMS notifies the hospital of a suspected stroke patient, at which time the hospital implements a system-wide stroke alert. Once the patient arrives in the Emergency Department, the staff is already prepared for rapid diagnosis and treatment.

Per the American Stroke Association guidelines, treatment options include aggressive use of medications like tPA (a drug that dissolves blood clots), antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, DVT prophylaxis, cholesterol reducing drugs, and smoking cessation.

The hospital also has two dedicated stroke units--4C and 5S--whose staff receives extensive training in the treatment of stroke patients. The plan of care for stroke patients is managed by a multidisciplinary team, including physicians, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, social workers, and speech-language pathologists.