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U Hospital's Stroke Services Named Region's First Primary Stroke Center


The University of Utah Hospital Stroke Center has been named a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO).

This national certification-a first for any stroke program in the Intermountain West-demonstrates that U Hospitals stroke-care program follows national standards and guidelines that can significantly improve outcomes for stroke patients. University Hospital joins a group of only 80 hospitals in the nation to receive the Primary Stroke Center designation.

The Stroke Center, serving patients from Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, and Montana, features a comprehensive program, including:

- "Brain Attack" teams

- Inter-hospital emergency stroke consultation

- Telestroke technology allowing rural physicians face-to-face stroke consultation

- Community education and

- National and international research

The Primary Stroke Center distinction came after JCAHO conducted a voluntary on-site visit extensively reviewing program processes, including the centers ability to evaluate and improve care within the organization. The stroke program also earned the Joint Commissions "Gold Seal of Approval" for health-care quality and a stroke Disease-Specific Care Certification. Stroke, a leading cause of serious, long-term disability, is the third leading cause of death in the United States. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds and someone dies of a stroke every 3.1 minutes.

An independent, not-for-profit organization, the Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. It evaluates and accredits more than 15,000 health-care organizations and programs in the United States. A list of JCAHO-certified programs is available at