Sunday 17 July 2022: Today is the third anniversary of the launch of Bermuda Hospitals Board’s (BHB) Primary Stroke Centre. In April, the Stroke Centre received confirmation from Accreditation Canada that it had achieved distinction certification for its acute stroke and rehabilitation services – Accreditation Canada’s highest award for stroke centres. This certification means that BHB has implemented the protocols to ensure rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke, as well as evaluation, prevention and rehabilitation.
The full report is being released to the public today and can be found on bermudahospitals.bm.
BHB provides its Primary Stroke Centre services in a clinical affiliation with Johns Hopkins Medicine International. The collaboration has been instrumental in developing novel services to better manage stroke care in Bermuda. This includes the tele stroke service, where a neurologist is involved via phone and the internet from the first indication on arrival at the hospital that the person is experiencing a stroke.
“Every second is critical in the case of a stroke,” said BHB consultant neurologist Dr Kehinde Kolapo. “That we are able to quickly identify stroke allows us to administer IV thrombolysis tPA (IV tPA), a clot-busting drug which greatly improves patient outcomes.”
Local tele stroke service began in June 2020. In December 2020, Johns Hopkins Medicine International neurologists began working with BHB. This innovative way of managing stroke patients helps us collaborate in real time to care for Bermudian patients, despite being over 800 miles apart,” said Dr Victor Urrutia, director of The Johns Hopkins Hospital Comprehensive Stroke Center.
In 2021, BHB had its first transoceanic patient transferred from King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (KEMH) to a comprehensive stroke centre in the US for removal of a clot in a large blood vessel. The procedure (mechanical thrombectomy) is not available in Bermuda and, because patients must be transferred very quickly, referral overseas is difficult.
“Our efforts to improve stroke care at BHB are ongoing,” said BHB Chief of Staff Wesley Miller. “The introduction of BHB’s Patient Electronic and Administrative Records Log – PEARL – later this year is an example of that. It will create efficiencies that will help ensure we provide the best care and safety for our stroke patients.”
File photo of the 2019 launch of the Bermuda Hospitals Board Primary Stroke Centre. Pictured centre are Dr Victor Urrutia, director of The Johns Hopkins Hospital Comprehensive Stroke Center, and Dr Francene Gayle, then director of BHB’s Primary Stroke Centre.