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Monday, March 18 , 2019, 2:58 pm | Fair 67º

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Lompoc Valley Medical Center Honored for Stroke Program

Lompoc Valley Medical Center has been named winner of the Community Impact Award from Intalere Healthcare. It was the only hospital in California to receive an award, and one of just three on the West Coast to be recognized.

The award recognized the success of LVMC’s Code Stroke telemedicine program.

Intalere honored the acute hospital at its ninth annual awards program, which recognizes members who have implemented transformational initiatives to enhance their operations through process improvements.

“We are honored to recognize our members for their accomplishments, and believe that through collaboration and engagement, we can positively impact healthcare delivery for the future,” said Julius Heil, Intalere president and CEO.

The award came because LVMC was able to address a pressing medical issue in Lompoc:

The community has no neurologist available around the clock. With stroke among the leading causes of death in Santa Barbara County, addressing that lack of a neurologist became a critical need.

Code Stroke is a collaboration with Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital and includes the use of 24-hour teleneurology access via the use of an InTouch Health computerized mobile robot.

Patients displaying signs of stroke were routinely transferred out of town to larger hospitals with more advanced treatment capabilities.

The need to transfer could delay potential life-saving care and would force the patient’s support network to travel to be near the patient.

The ability to use the robot for quick consultation with specialists can lead to faster diagnosis and treatment for patients, and ultimately better outcomes for patients, according to Yvette Cope, assistant nurse executive, who coordinates the project.

“Since Jan. 1, 2016, the Code Stroke program prevented 35 patients who arrived by ambulance from begin transferred out of the area,” Cope said. “In all, 28 patients were admitted and 30 were transferred (for more advanced treatment capabilities).

"Prior to the Code Stroke program, the patients who were admitted to LVMC would have been transferred,” Cope said.

Code Stroke began at LVMC early in 2016. The hospital was designated an Acute Stroke Center by Santa Barbara County Emergency Services and as an Acute Stroke Ready Hospital by the Center for Improvement in Healthcare Quality.

For more about Lompoc Valley Medical Center, visit Lompocvmc.com.

— Nora K. Wallace, Lompoc for Valley Medical Center.


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