Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death and a leading cause of disability among Americans. However, many hospitals do not have the necessary personnel, equipment, and organization to triage and treat patients with stroke rapidly and effectively. The lack of adequate acute stroke care capabilities in many hospitals endangers the lives of the thousands of Americans who suffer strokes each year.
One approach to improving the stroke care infrastructure is the establishment of stroke centers, hospitals that have the expertise and infrastructure to deliver high quality stroke care. A coordinated, comprehensive stroke system facilitates patient access to the full range of stroke services and improves the quality of care that patients receive. Although Primary Stroke Centers enhance the quality of stroke care, improve patient outcomes, and promote efficient health care delivery, access to Primary Stroke Centers varies by region. In fact, fewer than one in four Americans can reach a Primary Stroke Center in less than 30 minutes. We believe that it is time for Massachusetts to improve access to Primary Stroke Centers so that we can provide a higher level of care for the thousands of Americans who suffer strokes each year. Will you join us?