Telestroke Program

Program Overview:
Stroke is the third leading cause of death among Americans and the No. 1 cause of disability in adults. Of all strokes, 85 percent are ischemic in nature, meaning that it is caused by an obstruction within a vessel supplying blood to the brain. Research shows endovascular therapy or intervention to remove a blockage or blood clot is the most effective treatment. 


One of the country’s top centers for neurology and neurosurgery available at Wickenburg Community Hospital.

Teledoc with Barrow Neurological Institute

Wickenburg Community Hospital (WCH) Emergency Department is excited to announce the new affiliation with St Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, and Barrow Neurological Institute for our Telestroke Service on June 7, 2021. Barrow Neurological Institute is listed as “The world’s largest neurological disease treatment and research institution” and “U.S. News & World Report” consistently ranks Barrow as a top center for neurology and neurosurgery in the country.”  Barrow provides support to WCH along with educational opportunities to provide the community with exceptional Stroke Care.

How it Works

The National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) is a systematic assessment tool that provides a quantitative measure of stroke-related neurologic deficit. The NIHSS was originally designed as a research tool to measure baseline data on patients in acute stroke clinical trials. Now, the scale is also widely used as a clinical assessment tool to evaluate acuity of stroke patients, determine appropriate treatment, and predict patient outcome.1

When a patient of WCH Emergency Department is presenting stroke symptoms he/she will be evaluated by our Board Certified Emergency Physicians, have an assessment completed by a specially trained Registered Nurse who has National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) education, then taken to the WCH CT Scanner which, has been described by Barrow Neurological Institute Neurologists as having some of the best ever seen for evaluating stroke.

During the stroke evaluation WCH has the technology, Teledoc, that actually allows the patient to see and communicate with a Barrow Neurological Institute physician remotely;  the WCH RN or physician will assist with the stroke assessment and Barrow specialist will provide further direction of treatment based on diagnostic findings. If continued treatment is needed based on the physician decision, transportation is arranged immediately to get patients to a higher level of care at St Joseph Hospital and Medical Center/Barrow Neurological Institute. Transportation will be arranged with the PHI Air Evacuation unit based on WCH.

Benefits of Telestroke:

  • Patients showing signs of stroke can be examined by a neurologist in real-time.  In addition to the assessment of the patient, the neurologist can view scans of the patient’s brain to detect possible damage from a hemorrhage or blocked artery.
  • A major benefit of the collaboration is that patients with stroke symptoms who meet the criteria can often be administered clot-busting medications within the narrow window of time necessary to minimize permanent injury to the brain.
  • In collaboration with Barrow Neurological Institute neurologists and our emergency department providers, immediate, life-saving interventions can begin shortly after the patient enters the ED.  This service affords the patient better care and ultimately saves lives.

Follow-up Care

If an inpatient hospital stay of three midnights or longer is necessary and it is determined that additional rehabilitation to gain strength and coordination is needed, WCH’s Transitional Care unit provides rehabilitation therapies for patients transitioning home or to a long-term care facility. Patients will receive individualized care led by a compassionate team that recognizes the importance of family involvement. This unique program is available to you at WCH so you may recover close to home and loved ones.


Act FAST to Identify a Stroke

When a stroke continues without treatment, more brain damage continues to occur. This is because brain tissue is deprived of oxygen-rich blood when a stroke occurs, and brain cells begin to die. That’s why fast, immediate care is essential.  The National Stroke Association, developed a great campaign to identify a stroke with the FAST acronym:

F – Face. If someone’s face is drooping on one side, it could be a stroke. Ask them to smile, and if half their face is drooping, call 9-1-1 immediately.

A – Arm. If someone suffers from sudden weakness or paralysis on one side of the body, it could be a stroke. Ask the person to raiser his/her arm, and if one drifts downward, call 9-1-1 immediately.

S – Speech. Sudden slurred speech or difficulty with words could be the sign of a stroke. Ask the person to talk, and if they have sudden difficulty, call 9-1-1 immediately.

T – Time. If you see any of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 immediately because time is brain when it comes to stroke!


Call 9-1-1 immediately if you observe any of these symptoms.

Note the time of the first symptom.
This information is important and can affect treatment decisions.


Primary Care

Community Hospital Clinics are located in Wickenburg, Wittmann, and Congress. We sincerely follow our mission to provide quality health and wellness services where the patient, family, and community come first.

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Emergency Care

Our 8 bed Emergency Room department is fully staffed with emergency physicians, nurses, and ER specialists. Your wait time is typically measured in minutes not hours as in the larger metropolitan hospitals.

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Surgical Services

Wickenburg Community Hospital provides a wide variety of surgical care and treatment. We serve a vibrant and active community who favors quality health care close to home.

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