Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital Receive Primary Stroke Center Recertification by The Joint Commission
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Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital Receive Primary Stroke Center Recertification by The Joint Commission 

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Sentara is only system in the region to offer this certified quality of care

In November 2008 Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital earned Primary Stroke Center re-certifications with notable survey results from The Joint Commission highlighting the exceptional patient care by the Sentara team of physicians and clinicians.

Primary Stroke Center Certification is a distinction whereby a hospital meets national standards and guidelines for improving clinical outcomes for stroke patients and critical elements are being exercised for the long-term success in improving outcomes. There are 12 primary stroke centers in Virginia, with Sentara having three of the 12 and the only system in the region to offer this certified quality of care.

Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital was also re-certified as a Primary Stroke Center in summer 2008. Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital, Sentara Leigh Hospital and Sentara Norfolk General Hospital all earned the initial Primary Stroke Certification in the past several years and the certification requires exceptional efforts for stroke patient care in order for the designation to remain in place.

Emergency room physicians work with neurologists and interventional radiologists who are board-certified and specialty trained in neurovascular disease to quickly assess and treat acute stroke symptoms and emergency neurology care. Improved quality outcomes due to accurate and speedy assessments, and administering of tPA treatment on ischemic attacks can result in minimizing neurological damage and mortality risks- in effect preserving proper nervous system functions.

Sentara is proud of the many physicians who participate in a statewide Stroke Systems Task Force. Sentara Chief of Neurology Richard Zweifler, MD, along with Bruce Lo, MD, emergency physician at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, and John Agola, MD, neuroradiologist at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, are all a part of this task force implemented by the Virginia Department of Health, to develop a statewide “prehospital and interhospital Stroke Triage Plan.”

Under the establishment of the statewide plan and guidelines, health systems can be designated as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, which brings in greater involvement in education and research, improved protocols, and pathways that lead to reduced patients’ average length of stay.

Sentara Norfolk General Hospital plans to seek Comprehensive Stroke Center certification once the guidelines for application are established and available for The Joint Commission designation.


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