In June, the Barnes-Jewish and
Washington University Stroke &
Cerebrovascular Center became the
first certified Comprehensive Stroke Center in Missouri—and one of the
first in the country.
The Joint Commission and the
American Heart Association and
American Stroke Association
established the certification process
to recognize hospitals that have the
resources and expertise to treat the
most complex stroke cases, including
brain aneurysms. In 2005, the Joint
Commission designated the Stroke
& Cerebrovascular Center as the first
Primary Stroke Center in Missouri.
“What makes a Comprehensive
Stroke Center truly comprehensive
is that it coordinates the full range
of stroke care and treatment, from
clot-dissolving medicine to complex
interventions and surgery for brain aneurysms,” says David Carpenter, MD, a Washington University
vascular neurologist at Barnes-Jewish
The Stroke & Cerebrovascular Center
underwent a rigorous review process
before receiving certification. The
staff had to demonstrate that the
center had the human resources—
and the technology—to perform
the neurosurgical or endovascular
procedures needed by some patients
with stroke and that it offered
advanced imaging techniques.
Additionally, the center had to show
that it participates in stroke research,
that it coordinates the care of stroke
patients with emergency medical
services across the region and that it
provides care for patients with stroke
after they leave the hospital.
“Our mission,” says Mary Spencer,
MSN, RN, neuroscience program
director at Barnes-Jewish Hospital,
“is to improve stroke care locally and
regionally, providing the highest level
of treatment available.”
|Stroke Center Requirements
80% of acute stroke patients have diagnostic brain image completed
within 45 minutes of it being ordered. Imaging is available on site 24/7.
Stroke performance is measured and reviewed to evaluate processes
and outcomes and to improve quality of care.
Provide guidelines to Emergency Medical Services that address
transferring stroke patients to the comprehensive stroke center.
Has dedicated neuro-intensive care unit (ICU) for complex stroke
patients, which includes physician and nursing staff with expertise
and experience on site to provide neuro-critical care 24/7.
80% of emergency department practitioners must provide evidence
of review of all stroke protocols.
Provide care to 20 or more patients with diagnosed subarachnoid
hemorrhage (stroke from burst brain aneurysm) each year.