Stroke Certification and Why it Matters – Advancing the Field of Neurology


The certification process for stroke first began in 2003, when the American Heart Association (AHA), American Stroke Association (ASA), and The Joint Commission created the initial Primary Stroke Center Certification. Fast forward to the year 2011, there were over 800 Joint Commission certified Primary Stroke Centers, a small percentage of the reported 4,000-5,000 total US Hospitals. The collaboration of the AHA/ASA, and Joint Commission evolved further in 2012 with the introduction of the more advanced Comprehensive Stroke Center certification, creating additional clinical standards, processes, training, staff resources/coverage, and quality outcomes reporting.

As Telestroke first emerged in the market in the mid 2000’s, Primary and Comprehensive Stroke Centers took immediate notice and focus to Telehealth. It only took a few years for PSC/CSC’s to begin actively studying the profound effects that the presence of Telehealth had not only on PSC/CSC’s, but the community hospitals who were participating as sites in a Telestroke network operated by a PSC or CSC.

Once the PSC/CSC had studied and introduced elements that embraced and encouraged telehealth, they found the impact so powerful that they added an additional stroke center certification level. The Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification specifically certifies the spoke or distant site hospital where the patient presents, requiring a door to telemedicine link of 20 minutes or less along with additional coverage, reporting, and order set requirements. The Acute Stroke Ready Hospital Certification was a landmark move when it was introduced in 2015, originally initiated by research from the Brain Attack Coalition in 2013. The result of the continued evolving certifications and focus on clinical outcomes has had an ongoing positive effect on improving access to life saving neuroscience technology and interventions.

Our providers and leadership team has the experience working in, developing, and maintaining PSC/CSC status at all levels of certification, and it’s another differentiator Sevaro has with its hospital partners. A collaboration with Sevaro brings medical, nursing, and administrative experience in these complex and large PSC/CSC, with special focus on building, managing, and improving the Telehealth component