Implementation of Best Practices—Developing and Optimizing Regional Systems of Stroke Care: Design and Methodology

Matthew E. Ehrlich, Brad J. Kolls, Mayme Roettig, Lisa Monk, Shreyansh Shah, Ying Xian, James G. Jollis, Christopher B. Granger, Carmelo Graffagnino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The AHA Guidelines recommend developing multi-tiered systems for the care of patients with acute stroke.1 An ideal stroke system of care should ensure that all patients receive the most efficient and timely care, regardless of how they first enter or access the medical care system. Coordination among the components of a stroke system is the most challenging but most essential aspect of any system of care. The Implementation of Best Practices For Acute Stroke Care—Developing and Optimizing Regional Systems of Stroke Care (IMPROVE Stroke Care) project, is designed to implement existing guidelines and systematically improve the acute stroke system of care in the Southeastern United States. Project participation includes 9 hub hospitals, approximately 80 spoke hospitals, numerous pre-hospital agencies (911, fire, and emergency medical services) and communities within the region. The goal of the IMPROVE Stroke program is to develop a regional integrated stroke care system that identifies, classifies, and treats acute ischemic stroke patients more rapidly and effectively with reperfusion therapy. The project will identify gaps and barriers to implementation of stroke systems of care, leverage existing resources within the regions, aid in designing strategies to improve care processes, bring regional representatives together to agree on and implement best practices, protocols, and plans based on guidelines, and establish methods to monitor quality of care. The impact of implementation of stroke systems of care on mortality and long-term functional outcomes will be measured.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)105-111
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican heart journal
StatePublished - Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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