Saturday, April 18, 2009
Hi again everyone
Just a quick post to give you a link to today's front page newspaper article featuring my stroke buddy John Montgomery and his wife Bev.
John Montgomery enjoys a sucker as his wife, Bev, gives him a loving embrace. A stroke left John, now a resident of Hillsborough Hospital, with little ability to understand or express speech. Guardian photo by Jim Day
I first met john after his first stroke in 2005 and before his second which left him with a much greater degree of disability. He was one of if not the most enthusiastic supporter of my presentation Finding a "New Normal" at the PEI Heart and Stroke Strategies for Stroke Recovery conference in Charlottetown in November 2007.
Click Here... to read the entire article
This article gives even more details about the establishment of the organized stroke support program announced on Thursday.
Till next post,
I have to tell you that I am pleased with the announcement of the establishment of a n acute stroke unit for our province in yesterday's provincial budget.
I am also very happy with the overall roll out as it was presented in the press release at the special press conference held this morning in Charlottetown.
I am including the press release from government here so you can read it in detail.
April 17, 2009
For immediate release
Government Commits to an Organized Stroke Care Model for PEI
View details and
After careful consideration, Government has chosen a care delivery model called “Organized Stroke Care.” This delivery model has been proven to improve patient outcomes after stroke. It promotes a coordinated approach with early assessment, mobilization and rehabilitation for every patient who can benefit.
“The number one priority of this Government is health care,” said Premier Robert Ghiz, “and the implementation of an Organized Stroke Care model will provide significant support to Islanders and their families who suffer from strokes. We had identified the need for such a model and we are pleased to be moving forward with this important initiative.”
The cornerstone of the Organized Stroke Care model is inpatient Stroke Unit Care, which includes management on an Acute Stroke Unit followed by intensive rehabilitation on a Rehabilitation Stroke Unit. Stroke Unit care is provided on specific nursing units, involving collaborative care between health professionals with special interest and expertise in stroke care. To achieve optimal outcomes, this care model must include care on both the Acute Stroke and Rehabilitation Units.
It is recognized that there will be health human resource challenges associated with the implementation of an Organized Stroke Care model. For this reason, Government has chosen a phased-in approach over 4 years. Staffing of stroke care positions may leave vacancies elsewhere in the system, so careful consideration will be taken to move forward in a responsible manner that ensures quality care across the entire system.
The Department of Health, in its leadership role of providing quality, sustainable health care to Islanders, has recognized and supported the priorities of stroke care, as well as the overall prevention and management of chronic disease. The Province’s Strategy for Healthy Living continues to address risk factors for chronic disease, including healthy eating, tobacco reduction and physical activity.
“This is a great day for health care in PEI,” said Doug Currie, Minister of Health. “I wish to thank the Heart and Stroke Foundation for their ongoing cooperative efforts to improve stroke care for Islanders. This stroke model will not only allow us to provide better care, but, when fully implemented, it will also alleviate some of the current bed pressures on our health system.”
In collaboration with health system partners, PEI has already begun to implement various initiatives within the 2006 provincial stroke strategy across the province. These include Ambulance direct transfer policies and implementation of TPA (clot busting drug) protocols at the two major hospitals in PEI. As well, the Heart and Stroke Foundation, Island EMS and Murphy’s Pharmacies launched a media campaign to increase the awareness of signs and symptoms of stroke.
The Heart and Stroke Foundation and other partners have led many of the activities implemented to date. Government applauds these efforts and recognizes that further advancement of the strategy cannot occur without significant investment by Government.
Phase one (years 1-2) of the program includes a Stroke Unit Care model and a Rehabilitation Stroke Unit to be located on a specifically designated Unit at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) in Charlottetown. The QEH was identified because two thirds of stroke occurring in PEI occur in Charlottetown and in Eastern PEI. The QEH is the central referral hospital in PEI, access to neurologists and physiatrists is best at QEH and the Provincial Rehabilitation Unit is already located at the QEH. Island EMS will continue to take patients to either the QEH Emergency Department or the Prince County Hospital (PCH) Emergency Department for initial stabilization in emergency care and critical care.
Also, in phase one, the PCH will run a Secondary Stroke Prevention pilot that is intended to roll-out province wide. The Prevention Unit will be focused on patients who have already had a stroke or TIA, which is commonly referred to as a “mini stroke.” The objective of the prevention care will be to delay future disease events, achieve improvement, promote wellness and enhance the patient’s quality of life.
Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of disability. In PEI, there are approximately 340 to 360 strokes annually – this equals about one stroke every day.
As you can see by committing to an "organized stroke support program" our government has gone beyond the scope of an acute stroke unit and has addressed other important issues such as prevention, recognition, first responders, acute treatment, rehabilitative treatment as well as follow up care.
This is a giant step forward that addresses most if not all of the concerns raised by my information piece that I had presented to each of the sitting members and official opposition members prior to budget meetings leading up to the budget presented yesterday.
How could I not be pleased with a result like this.
Congratulations to everyone involved in working toward this end. April 16th, 2009 will go down as a red letter day for future stroke victims and their families as well as present stroke survivors and their famiies in Prince Edward Island.
Friday, April 3, 2009
Have you heard of Ron Gardner? Neither had I until today! Ron invited me to be his Facebook friend earlier today and joined my Net Friends list so I started checking him out. As a fellow stroke survivor with a business background and his ability to speak makes him someone that I will want to be getting to know better as time goes by.
In the meantime you may wish to check out his book "The Brave Steps For Stroke Survivors and Families: A Message of Motivation and Hope"
His press release follows along with a link to his book site. His book is available in three formats. Book, audio on CD and audio on MP3.
A Survivor of Near Fatal Stroke Offers Motivation and Hope to Millions
Pennsville, NJ - May 28, 2008 - Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the number one cause of adult disability in the United States. For survivors and their loved ones, it is a life-altering event. Ron Gardner, a survivor of a severe stroke, understands what it feels like to have his life changed forever. He has made it his personal mission to better the lives of the more than five million survivors with his new book, Take Brave Steps For Stroke Survivors and Families: A message of Motivation and Hope.
The book illustrates how motivation can meet inspiration. Gardner hopes it will lead readers from “bitter to better.” Ron shares his heart-felt personal tragedies and triumphs over stroke survival and guides readers and loved ones through the complex maze of stroke recovery with his self-reflections, tips, and other informative tools. Because families are adversely impacted by stroke in many ways that are difficult to manage and understand, he also introduces his wife Patti and daughter Molly to share how the stroke changed their lives and to tell how to prepare families and loved ones for the significant challenges that are about to unfold.
There are more than 780,000 new strokes each year. Many are preventable. According to Gardner, contributing factors to his stroke were unchecked stress and high blood pressure after more than twenty years in the corporate business world. Gardner urges everyone not to think this only happens to the “other guy.” Now a motivational speaker and trainer, he intends to use his book and its powerful testimony to encourage fellow corporate executives to make healthy lifestyle changes before they become the “other guy,” as he did.
By the way don't you miss joining my Net Friends List. Just enter your name and email address in the form over on the Right margin of this blog. I share from time to time interesting finds that I come accross on the net as I research the various topics that I blog about.
Till next post,