Stroke patients across Western Australia will soon be able to access specialist consultant advice, day or night, under an expanded Statewide Telestroke Service, announced today by the McGowan Government.
The extended service will see consultant stroke physicians available 24/7 and enable clinicians in rural and outer metropolitan areas to seek expert assistance on quick diagnosis and appropriate treatment for their patients.
This rapid, specialist advice will be delivered using contemporary technology and will be critical in saving lives and reducing the potential for disability.
The Statewide service will ensure equity of access for patients who suffer stroke and live in outer metropolitan, regional and remote areas.
The $9.7 million funding, as part of the WA Recovery Plan, will also be used to establish an integrated communication and image viewing solution for acute stroke patient diagnosis and treatment. This will enable the physicians to remotely transfer CT images, data, documentation and visual diagnosis of the patient.
Expansion of the Telestroke Service aligns to the recommendation made by the Sustainable Health Review to improve co-ordination and access for country patients and invest in prevention and innovation for a more sustainable, equitable and efficient health system.
This service will create system efficiencies that will contribute to the State’s Recovery Plan, whilst also improving health outcomes for patients who experience a stroke and live in rural and outer metropolitan areas of WA.
As stated by Acting Health Minister Rita Saffioti:
“This is another example of the McGowan Government delivering on the recommendations of the Sustainable Health Review and progressing the WA recovery plan.
“Stroke is one of Australia’s biggest killers and is a leading cause of disability – which is why rapid access to specialists is so important in reducing the impact of stroke.
“Expansion of the Telestroke Service will ensure that people can get timely consultant care, no matter where they are.
“In the unfortunate event of a stroke, this service will ensure that all Western Australians have equitable access to specialist stroke consultants, which will be a huge benefit to all outer metropolitan, rural and remote patients.”