Every minute counts when someone is experiencing stroke symptoms. And now, South Peninsula Hospital offers web-based telemedicine to allow a consulting neurologist to get their eyes on a patient within minutes of their arrival to the Emergency Room.
Offered through the telehealth program at Providence Alaska Medical Center, tele-stroke uses an electronic internet platform and portable equipment to connect stroke patients and the hospital’s ER doctors with a neurologist in Anchorage or Seattle. Using extremely high definition camera, the consulting neurologist can talk to the patient in Homer about their symptoms, evaluate the patient’s motor skills, view their CT scan, make a diagnosis and prescribe treatment.
Strokes are the third leading cause of death in the United States and time is very important when treating a stroke. A victim who is treated within three hours of a stroke has a significantly lower risk of permanent brain damage or death than one who waits for treatment.
Tele-stroke joins electronic-ICU as recent forms of telehealth offered at South Peninsula Hospital, allowing for more advanced care while keeping residents close to home.