Riverside’s Primary Stroke Center Receives Re-certification

Posted: Thursday, August 11, 2011 12:00 am

Kankakee, IL (August 11, 2011) – Riverside Medical Center, the area’s first certified Primary Stroke Center, has once again earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ for demonstrating compliance with nationally developed standards for stroke care.  With this award, Riverside received re-certification as a Certified Primary Stroke Center.

"This re-certification confirms our commitment to continued exceptional care for patients and families affected by stroke and TIA-transient ischemic attacks," said Dr. Bruce Dodt, Riverside Board Certified Neurologist and Medical Director of the Stroke Program. “Our multi-disciplinary stroke care team and our distinctive continuum of care from stroke onset to recovery ensure we are using the latest proven, evidence-based guidelines to improve stroke care, improve outcomes and prevent future strokes and cardiovascular events."

Riverside’s Certified Primary Stroke Center provides patients with unique and crucial benefits.  Riverside’s Stroke Care Team includes board certified neurologists and neurosurgeons that are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, to respond immediately to acute stroke patients. The team also includes a stroke coordinator, stroke-trained ambulance paramedics and the emergency department, a neuro-psychologist, certified neuroscience registered nurses, pharmacy services and rehabilitation services. Riverside also has three units dedicated to the care of stroke patients including neuroscience intensive care, medical telemetry and neurosurgery.

Riverside also provides comprehensive specialized follow-up care for those coping with effects from a stroke or a stroke-related condition. Riverside neurologists and neurosurgeons work together with physical, occupational and speech therapists to develop a program that helps the patient heal and recover from the disabling effects of stroke and lower the risks of future strokes.

 “In stroke care, time is brain,” says Jean E. Range, M.S., R.N., C.P.H.Q., executive director, Disease-Specific Care Certification, The Joint Commission. “By achieving certification as a Primary Stroke Center, Riverside Medical Center has proven that it has the ability to provide effective, timely care to stroke victims and can significantly improve outcomes for stroke patients.”

In 2009, Riverside Medical Center became the first hospital in the area to be certified as a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission of Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.  Riverside recently earned re-certification honors following the Joint Commission's two-year inspection.

 “We’re proud to achieve this distinction again from The Joint Commission,” said Riverside’s President and CEO Phil Kambic. “We are pleased to have The Joint Commission recognize our continued commitment to providing the best possible care to our patients and our community.”

Each year about 795,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke, which is the nation’s third leading cause of death. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and someone dies of a stroke every 3.1 minutes. Stroke is a leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States, with about 4.7 million stroke survivors alive today.

For more information about Riverside Medical Center’s Certified Primary Stroke Center, as well as our fully-accredited Heart Failure Center and other distinctions, please visit

The Joint Commission’s Primary Stroke Center Certification is based on the recommendations for primary stroke centers published by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association’s statements and guidelines for stroke care. The Joint Commission launched the program—the nation’s first—in 2003. A list of programs certified by The Joint Commission is available at

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating healthcare organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more than 18,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about The Joint Commission at


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