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Stroke Center

Each year, 700,000 Americans experience a stroke; this is the nation's third leading cause of death. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds. Stroke can cause death or serious long-term disability. There are about 4.7 million stroke survivors in the United States.

The Winter Haven Hospital Stroke Center was established to meet the needs for prompt diagnosis and treatment of people in our community who experience a stroke.  A goal of the center is also to promote community awareness and prevention of risk factors that contribute to stroke.   The hospital offers the full continuum of rehabilitation services that stroke patients may need to return to full recovery.

Our Stroke Center was certified in 2006 by The Joint Commission as an Advanced Primary Stroke Center.  This award is granted by the Joint Commission to recognize hospitals that are able to meet the unique needs of stroke patients.  Winter Haven Hospital was the first Joint Commission Certified Stroke Center in Polk, Highlands and Hardee Counties. Florida's Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is directed to transport patients with acute stroke symptoms to a Primary Stroke Center for treatment.

Our Stroke Center has been listed in the US News and World Reports Get With the Guidelines as one of the best stroke facilities in the United States since 2009.  The American Stroke Association awarded the Stroke Center its Get with the GuidelinesSM-Stroke Gold Performance Achievement Award .  To receive this award, hospitals must demonstrate at least 85 percent adherence to their guidelines for 24 or more months. Every year, starting 2010 and including 2012 our Stroke Center has received the Gold PlusAward presented by the American Stroke Association.

When a stroke occurs, time loss is brain loss. Early diagnosis and treatment of a stroke is important. Individuals are encouraged not to ignore symptoms of a stroke and to seek immediate care. The care of the person with stroke symptoms begins in our Emergency Department.  Our department is equipped to quickly provide brain-imaging scans and clot-busting drugs when appropriate.

By demonstrating excellence in its stroke program, Winter Haven Hospital was awarded the Gold Seal of Approval and has achieved certification from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.  Reviewers evaluate our Stroke Center for adherence to state-of-the-art standards and performance expectations.  In order for a program to earn the Gold Seal, it must: use national standards; use the clinical practice guidelines to manage care; and show an organized approach to measure performance and improve activities of care.

All nurses in our hospital have been trained to immediately call a Stroke Alert when they see the warning signs of a stroke.   The first responders to all Stroke Alerts in our hospital include RNs and other staff members who are extensively trained in acute stroke assessment.

Winter Haven Hospital Stroke Center includes a 12 bed acute stroke unit where patients are treated after their stroke.

In addition to our Stroke Center’s commitment to providing outstanding stroke care, we offer stroke rehabilitation services on our 24-bed Joy-Fuller Rehabilitation Center.  After discharge from the hospital, patients may receive additional treatment in our Outpatient Rehabilitation Center and may be referred to other community resources. The goal is to help stroke patients regain as much independence as possible and to improve the quality of their life.

The Winter Haven Hospital Stroke Center also focuses on community education and prevention. Our goal is to reduce strokes in our community by teaching about prevention, as well as improving recognition of the signs and symptoms of this potentially debilitating disease.

Stroke Center Services

  • Brain-imaging scans
  • Nurses specially trained to care for stroke patients
  • Physical Therapists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Speech Pathologists
  • Social Workers
  • Aggressive use of medications to dissolve clots
  • Patient education

 Additional resources:

Stroke Center
200 Avenue F, NE
Winter Haven, FL 33881
(863) 293-1121 x.1801
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