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Stroke unit helps patients receive life saving treatment

Hornsby residents experiencing a stroke can now receive life-saving treatment closer to home with the opening of a new stroke unit.

Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital opened the stroke unit at the same time as the new redevelopment and 12 months ago allowing ambulances to transport local patients with the onset of stroke, reducing the need to travel further to other hospitals.

Previously, patients who were suffering stroke would need to go to a nearby tertiary hospital and could receive their post-stroke care at Hornsby.

Neurologist and Head of Department Dr Omar Ahmad said by having acute stroke therapies at Hornsby meant that patients could receive thrombolysis- a clot busting procedure- earlier giving them better chances of recovery.

“All local stroke patients with onset within a 24-hour period are now directed to Hornsby to be assessed rather than be diverted to the nearest tertiary hospital,” Omar said.

This has led to many benefits including patients receiving all of their care including their rehabilitation in the one hospital and in their local area
Neurologist and Head of Department Dr Omar Ahmad

The new purpose-built stroke unit has 8 beds and three bariatric rooms 

Since its implementation, the new stroke pathway  has led to improved door-to-needle times  by 40 per cent compared to previous years; which is a key determinant of patient outcomes post-stroke. Patients are also receiving much higher rates of thrombolysis medication compared to previous years.   

“This has been made possible through the enhancement of Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital facilities as well as a streamlining of stroke processes,” Omar said.

“These have included upgrades to CT imaging, including advanced perfusion studies and onsite MRI; use of new technologies that provide mobile alerts and access to offsite imaging in order to further reduce delays to treatment and enhancements to staffing to aid management and care of higher acuity patients.”

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