Residents in Murray and Gordon counties in Northern Georgia can now receive world-class neurology and stroke diagnosis closer to home through a new telemedicine partnership between AdventHealth Murray and AdventHealth Gordon and Erlanger Health System of Chattanooga.
"We are pleased to partner with Erlanger Health System to provide our patients with tele-neurology care," said Pete Weber, president and CEO of AdventHealth Murray and AdventHealth Gordon. "With the strong alliance between our facilities and this advanced technology, patient care will only continue to improve."
The partnership will improve access to specialty-trained stroke neurologists to consult and diagnose, reducing the time for lifesaving treatment for patients suffering from stroke. By offering access to neurology specialists through telemedicine, some patients may even have the opportunity to receive stroke treatment closer to home rather than transferring to another medical facility.
"Erlanger Health System has teamed up with leaders in the telemedicine industry to offer regional hospitals trained specialists and new technologies to identify stroke as well as provide guidance on the best medical care for the patient," said Dr. Thomas Devlin, co-director of Erlanger's Southeast Regional Stroke Center.
"This tele-neurology collaboration highlights our joined commitment with AdventHealth Murray and AdventHealth Gordon to provide excellent care to those suffering from an acute neurological emergency, such as stroke," said Matthew Shafer, Erlanger's administrative director of telemedicine. "Telemedicine has proven time and time again to be a powerful tool in expanding lifesaving specialty care throughout a larger region."
Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death, the leading cause of disability in the United States and affects patients of all ages. The disease happens when a blood vessel carrying blood and oxygen to the brain is blocked or ruptures, decreasing the amount of blood flow to the brain cells. Risk factors for stroke disease can include high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, obesity, smoking, family history of stroke and prior stroke or transient ischemic attack.
To receive faster diagnosis and medical treatment, people must first recognize the signs of stroke -- FAST (Facial drooping, Arms drifting downward, Speech is slurred, Time to call 911) -- and call 911 immediately.