|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 6, 2006
NY STATE HEALTH DEPARTMENT DESIGNATES LINCOLN HOSPITAL AS FIRST STROKE CENTER IN THE SOUTH BRONX
Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center is the first hospital in the South Bronx to receive designation from the NY State Health Department as an official Stroke Center. Emergency Medical Services (EMS) are expected to bring patients with stroke-like symptoms directly to Lincoln, if they are within 20 minutes of the hospital. Stroke Center designation ensures that stroke victims will be seen quickly and receive the specific treatment that is a critical factor in preventing permanent disability or death.
“In some areas of the Bronx, stroke deaths are 30 to 50% higher than in New York City overall,” stated José R. Sánchez, Executive Director of Lincoln Hospital. “According to recent figures from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, stroke and heart disease combined is the second leading cause of premature death in the Bronx and stroke is the sixth highest cause of hospitalization in the Southeastern Bronx. Lincoln has an obligation to confront this illness head on, with the latest technology and information to improve outcomes for this community.”
Lincoln Hospital has a dedicated stroke team of specially trained health care workers who provide 24/7 access. Patients undergo rapid testing, analysis and treatment, providing the best chance for complete recovery.
Strokes are caused by a blood clot in the brain. If a stroke victim gets to the hospital within 3 hours from the onset of stroke symptoms, a “clot-busting” drug may be able to undo the clot’s damage. “Time is brain,” says Dr. Sindhaghatta Venkatram, Director of the Stroke Center. The longer it takes for diagnosis and treatment, the more damage to the brain. Conversely, the faster the process, the more likely damage can be corrected. “Lincoln can quickly diagnose and treat strokes.”
The signs and symptoms of stroke include sudden weakness or numbness of the face, arm or leg on one side of the body, confusion or difficulty speaking or understanding, trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance, or a severe unexplained headache. Many residents of the South Bronx, which Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center serves, are at a high risk for stroke.
“If you, a family member or friend experiences any of these symptoms, do not wait,” advises Melissa Schori, MD, Medical Director of Lincoln Hospital. “Come immediately to Lincoln’s Emergency Department. Time is of the essence.”
Lincoln is located at East 149th and Morris Avenue in the South Bronx. It is a member of the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation, the nation’s largest municipal health care system. Lincoln’s internationally known Centers of Excellence include its Level 1 Trauma Center, one of the busiest in the nation. Known for consistently redefining healthcare for the 21st century, it was recently recognized by Consumers Digest Magazine as one of the top fifty “exceptional hospitals” in the nation.