Stroke Services BC's mandate is to provide leadership, coordination, communication and project support to implement the provincial stroke strategy, and to ensure ongoing quality improvement and change initiatives.
In partnership with the regional health authorities and physicians, Stroke Services BC endeavours to improve stroke care, identifying areas for targeted improvement. It provides leadership in evidence-based stroke care in BC which has been shown to significantly reduce death and disability, and secondary complications.
Stroke Services BC also:
Stroke Services BC is proud of the level of care provided to stroke patients in the province and vast improvements have been made to ensure all British Columbians have rapid access to the care they need, when they need it.
- Holds the provincial budget in support of change management and system redesign, and allocates resources to priorities.
- Monitors individual and system-wide performance.
- Leads several evaluation and improvement initiatives.
It is known that rapid access to care, including stroke unit care, can be the difference between life and death for many patients. Stroke unit care reduces the likelihood of death and disability by as much as 30 per cent - which is why BC now has designated stroke centres across the province.
Other improvements include:
- Transporting stroke patients to the most appropriate hospital, ensuring timely access to necessary care, thanks to a partnership with BC Ambulance/BC Emergency Health Services.
- Adding 75 new dedicated stroke beds since 2011.
- Conducting a comprehensive evaluation of rehabilitation practices for stroke by following 230 patients across the province for 60 days to help identify gaps in rehab care. Health authorities are working to address those gaps and ensure harmonized rehabilitation care for patients regardless of where they are rehabilitated.
- Implementing a web-based learning module for all health authorities and BC Ambulance — approximately 1,500 individuals have completed or are enrolled in the module to date — which enhances expertise in stroke care, enabling them to better care for their patients.
Stroke Services BC continues to work with health authorities, physicians, nurses, health professionals, patients and families to improve all areas of stroke care, from specialized access to health worker education.