Impact of Stroke Care Unit on Patient Outcomes in a Community Hospital

STROKEAHA: November 19, 2013


Background and Purpose—Geographically distinct multidisciplinary stroke care units (SCUs) have been shown by systematic reviews to have superior patient outcomes compared with conventional care in general medical wards. However, the effectiveness of SCUs in smaller North American community hospitals is less well defined. The objective of this study was to determine the impact of establishing a specialized SCU at a community hospital on patient outcomes.

Methods—This is a retrospective cohort study of 805 patients with stroke admitted to 2 community hospitals in Edmonton, Canada, from 2003 to 2009 using an administrative database. Stroke was identified by International Classification of Disease, 10th Edition, codes. One of the community hospitals established a SCU on January 1, 2007. This date was used to subdivide the patient population into 2 cohorts: phase 1 from 2003 to 2006 and phase 2 from 2007 to 2009. Outcomes measured were mortality, discharge disposition, length of stay, and complications and were adjusted for age, sex, and medical comorbidities. Read More