Telestroke services expanded to O’Leary
Program provides survivors direct access to stroke team in Charlottetown
“Expanding telestroke services to rural hospitals is providing better access to care for Islanders and increased supports available right in their communities.” Health and Wellness Minister Robert Henderson
The provincial government’s telestroke program is being expanded to Community Hospital O’Leary.
Health and Wellness Minister Robert Henderson announced the service expansion Wednesday in O’Leary during the hospital’s 60th anniversary celebration.
Telestroke, the minister explained, is a component of the province’s telehealth program.
It will allow area stroke survivors direct access to a stroke team in Charlottetown from a room at Community Hospital O’Leary via a large-screen camera.
A stroke nurse, physiotherapist or occupational therapist would be in the room with the stroke survivor.
“For the most part, it saves them having to travel to Charlottetown,” Health P.E.I. communications television and a officer Amanda Hamel explained.
The service is provided through a secure network.
There is no new staff required as district-level stroke staff is already based in West Prince.
Provincial stroke program co-ordinator Trish HelmNeim said telestroke “is an emerging best practice in medicine that allows us to provide the timely and convenient access to rehabilitative stroke care to our patients while also providing enhanced collaboration among our health-care providers and stroke specialists.”
Henderson said the expansion was made possible through a co-funded investment of $15,000 from the foundation and the P.E.I. Women’s Institute.
Telestroke was first expanded to Prince County Hospital and subsequently to Western and then Souris hospitals.
“Expanding telestroke services to rural hospitals is providing better access to care for Islanders and increased supports available right in their communities,” said Henderson.
He said ongoing advancements and growth in stroke care are due to the hard work and dedication of staff and support from community partners.