Join the discussion about health care issues in our nation and community on our blog, WakeMed Voices.

Commitment to Quality

Share/Save/Bookmark
Decrease (-) Restore Default Increase (+)

Stroke Care

WakeMed Cary Hospital and WakeMed Raleigh Campus are both certified as primary stroke centers by the Joint Commission.   As a certified stroke center, WakeMed has proven that it provides quality care to stroke patients and follows national standards and guidelines that can significantly improve outcomes for stroke patients.  The WakeMed stroke team is made up of specially trained physicians, nurses and therapists who are dedicated to the care of stroke patients.

Every hospital in the United States submits data on specific measures to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, including for stroke care.  Since every hospital across the country submits the data on the same measures, consumers can easily compare the quality of services provided at different hospitals on CMS' Hospital Compare website.  At WakeMed, it is our goal to always be in the top 10 percent of hospitals.

For your convenience, following find WakeMed's performance on these measures.  You may notice a difference between the data that is posted on CMS' Hospital Compare website and the WakeMed website. This is because the data on Hospital Compare is almost a year old by the time it is posted.  This is due to the amount of time it takes for the data to be collected and submitted by hospitals and then validated by CMS.

Data from: January 1, 2012 - December 31, 2012

Blood Clot Medication within 3 Hours of Symptoms

  • Patients with ischemic stroke should get medicine called tissue plasminogen activator, or t-PA, to break up a blood clot within three (3) hours after their symptoms start. T-PA is a kind of thrombolytic therapy.
  • Research shows that hospitals that give t-PA within three (3) hours after symptoms start can limit the damage and disability caused by an ischemic stroke.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with ischemic stroke who arrived in the emergency department (ED) within two (2) hours of the onset of their symptoms and who got t-PA within three hours after the onset of their symptoms.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 90%
Cary Hospital - n/a
All Hospitals - 100%

Antithrombotic Therapy By End of Hospital Day 2

  • Ischemic stroke patients should get medicine known to reduce death, disability and the risk of another stroke (known as Antithrombotic Therapy) while in the hospital.
  • Research shows that hospitals should start this medicine within two (2) days of arriving at the hospital to prevent and treat clots and reduce the risk of complications from the stroke.
  • Serious complications caused by stroke include changes in thinking and memory; muscle, joint, and nerve problems; difficulty swallowing or eating; or blood clots.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with an ischemic stroke who got antithrombotic therapy started within 2 days of arriving at the hospital.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 98.6%
Cary Hospital - 98.1%
All Hospitals - 100%

Blod Clot Prevention Treatment within 2 Days of Hospital Arrival 

  • Patients admitted to the hospital with ischemic stroke or hemorrhagic stroke are at increased risk of developing new blood clots in their veins that break off and travel to other parts of the body, like the brain or lung (also called Venous Thromboembolism).
  • Research shows that hospitals should begin treatment to prevent new blood clots on the day of or day after these patients are arrived at the hospital.
  • Treatment can include medicine, medical devices, or tightly fitting stockings designed to keep blood from clotting.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with an ischemic stroke or hemorrhagic stroke who either received treatment to prevent blood clots on the day of or day after arrival at the hospital or had paperwork in their chart to explain why they had not received this treatment.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 96.7%
Cary Hospital - 91.4%
All Hospitals - 100%

Discharged on Antithrombotic Therapy

  • Patients admitted with an ischemic stroke are at risk for developing complications like another stroke even after discharge. These patients should get a prescription at discharge for a blood thinner that prevents complications like another stroke (called Antithrombotic Therapy.)
  • Serious complications caused by strokes include changes in thinking and memory; muscle, joint, and nerve problems; or difficulty swallowing or eating; or blood clots.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients who were admitted with an ischemic stroke who were given a prescription for an antithrombotic before they were discharged from the hospital.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 100%
Cary Hospital - 92%
All Hospitals - 100%

Patients with an Irregular Heartbeat Discharged on Anticoagulant

  • Patients admitted with an ischemic stroke who have an irregular heartbeat (also called atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter) are at greater risk of having another stroke.
  • Research suggests that medicine that thins the blood (called an anticoagulant) reduces the chance of another stroke in these patients.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with ischemic stroke and an irregular heartbeat (atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter) who were prescribed an anticoagulant before they were discharged from the hospital.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 100%
Cary Hospital - 100%
All Hospitals - 100%

Medicine to Lower Cholesterol at Discharge

  • Cholesterol is a fat (also called a lipid) that the body needs to work properly. Levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) that are too high can increase the chance of stroke, heart disease, and other problems. Medicines called statins can help lower LDL cholesterol levels.
  • In patients with ischemic stroke who have high cholesterol, taking statins can help lower the chance of another stroke.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with an ischemic stroke who got a prescription for a statin before they were discharged from the hospital.
  • Patients who shouldn't take statins are not included in this measure.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 98.3%
Cary Hospital - 100%
All Hospitals - 100%

Stroke Education 

  • Educating patients with ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke and their caregivers about stroke care and prevention helps patients live healthier lives and reduces health care costs.
  • During the hospital stay, hospital staff should give stroke patients and caregivers written information on:

1. How to activate the hospital emergency system
2. The importance of follow-up after leaving hospital
3. Medicines prescribed at discharge
4. What increases the chance of stroke
5. Warning signs and symptoms of stroke

  • This measure shows the percentage of patients with an ischemic stroke or a hemorrhagic stroke or their caregivers who received written information about these topics during their hospital stay.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 97.9%
Cary Hospital - 100%
All Hospitals - 100%

Evaluation for Rehabilitation Services 

  • Many ischemic stroke or hemorrhagic stroke patients will experience moderate or severe disability, including problems with physical, speech and mental functions. Stroke rehabilitation can help patients relearn those lost skills and regain independence. Once the stroke symptoms and related problems are under control, the hospital appropriate health care professionals should review the status of the patient and begin rehabilitation as soon as possible. Appropriate health care professionals include physicians, physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, and/or neuropsychologist. The earlier the patient starts rehabilitation, the better the recovery process.
  • Patients who need stroke rehabilitation may begin while they are still at the hospital and continue in a rehabilitation setting that is right for the patient. These options include inpatient rehabilitation units (either stand-alone or part of a hospital/clinic), outpatient units (usually part of a hospital/clinic), nursing home, or home-based programs.
  • This measure shows the percentage of patients admitted with an ischemic stroke or a hemorrhagic stroke who were evaluated for their need for rehabilitation services.
  • Higher percentages are better.
Raleigh Campus - 98.9%
Cary Hospital - 100%
All Hospitals - 100%