OAHS designated as a stroke ready hospital

Ortonville Area Health Services designated as a stroke ready hospital

 Ortonville Area Health Services (OAHS) joins 67 hospitals recognized for their preparedness to evaluate, stabilize and provide emergency treatment to patients with acute stroke symptoms.

In 2013, the Minnesota Legislature authorized the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to designate hospitals in Minnesota as “stroke hospitals.” Ortonville Area Health Services choose to apply to be designated as one of these stroke ready hospitals and received the notice of this achievement at the end of December.

“Choosing to be a part of the state’s stroke department, allows us even better access to current standard and guideline resources so we can continue to provide the best care possible for patients who present to us with stroke symptoms,” said Maria Botker, Stroke Designation Coordinator and ER/OB Nursing Coordinator at OAHS.

Nearly one in three Minnesota stroke victims first receives care at a small, rural hospital. In addition, more than one-third of Minnesotans live more than 60 minutes away from a Primary Stroke Center. These facts highlight the importance of local hospitals becoming designated as stroke-ready facilities.

“When it comes to stroke, time lost is brain lost,” said MDH Commissioner of Health Dr. Ed Ehlinger. “That is why it is so crucial that all Minnesota hospitals are ready to deliver high-quality stroke care close to home.”

It is important for Minnesotans to know how to spot a stroke quickly and call 9-1-1. You can recognize the signs and symptoms of a stroke by remembering F.A.S.T.

F – facial droop/numbness, A – arm weakness, S – speech difficulty, and T – time to call 9-1-1.