Clinical Services Planning

Recommendations for Stroke Care Best Practices

As the South West LHIN continues with its Clinical Services Planning work to improve access to stroke, endoscopy, and vision care services, progress has been made to move forward with the seven recommendations outlined in the Stroke Capacity Assessment and Best Practice Implementation Project.

Next Steps

The Directional Recommendations for the Future State of Stroke Care were accepted by the South West LHIN Board of Directors on March 17, 2015. A Business Case has been sent to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for consideration. The LHIN is in the process of working with health service partners to finalize a financial methodology that will outline the required funds to implement the strategy.

The intent of changes to stroke care are a result of evidence showing that stroke survivors have the best outcomes if they are cared for in a system that is organized and coordinated across the one’s health care journey. These changes will realign services to ensure this coordination happens. The ultimate goal of the project is to ensure stroke survivors receive best practice/evidence based stroke care through the realignment of stroke services at Designated Stroke Centres of excellence and have access to acute and rehabilitative stroke care reducing mortality and improving the outcomes of stroke survivors.

Working with its health service provider partners, the South West LHIN is working to move stroke care from 28 hospitals to 7 hospitals in the South West LHIN:

Acute Stroke Care will be provided by:

  • London Health Sciences Centre (University Hospital)
  • Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (Stratford General Hospital)
  • Grey Bruce Health Services (Owen Sound Hospital)
  • St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital
  • Alexandra Marine and General Hospital (Telestroke Hospital providing access to tPA only)

Inpatient Rehabilitation Stroke Care will be provided by:

  • St. Joseph’s Health Care, London – Parkwood Institute
  • Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (Stratford General Hospital)
  • Grey Bruce Health Services (Owen Sound Hospital)
  • St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital
  • Woodstock Hospital

Why is the delivery of stroke care changing?

When a person suffers a stroke, every second counts. The South West LHIN admits an average of 1416 stroke and transient ischemic attack (TIA) patients to its hospitals each year.

Acute stroke unit care has been shown to reduce mortality rates by up to 30%.

To provide specialized care on an acute stroke unit, hospitals need to treat a minimum of 165 patients with ischemic (caused by a clot) strokes per year as outlined in Health Quality Ontario’s and the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care’s Quality Based Procedures: Clinical Handbook for Stroke (Acute and Postacute) updated in February 2015.

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