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Lewis County General Hospital partners with Upstate for enhanced stroke care through telemedicine

Lewis County General Hospital in Lowville, N.Y., is the latest health care facility to sign on with the Comprehensive Stroke Center at Upstate University Hospital for its telestroke program.

Upstate is the region’s only Comprehensive Stroke Center as designated by DNV Healthcare, a national hospital accrediting body. Upstate is also recognized as a primary stroke center as designated by the state Department of Health. Both of these designations speak to the high level of stroke care available at Upstate.

Through its Telemedicine Network, Upstate University Hospital is able to connect its neurologists with the medical staff at Lewis County General Hospital—some 90 miles north of Syracuse— to aid in the assessment and care of patients at the Lowville facility who may be experiencing a stroke.

When a patient arrives at the Emergency Department Lewis County General Hospital with symptoms consistent with stroke, Lewis County General Hospital staff can receive a consult with an Upstate neurologist. Within minutes the neurologist will be able to view the CT scan, examine the patient and talk with patients, families and physicians about possible treatment.

Lewis County General Hospital Emergency Department Medical Director Mark Parshall, MD, is pleased to be partnering with Upstate on this initiative.

“We are excited to begin this partnership with Upstate to provide more advanced stroke care for patients in our emergency department,” Parshall said. “The technology will connect our physicians with a neurologist in Syracuse, allowing them to share CT scans and other vital data securely while communicating live via videoconference.”

Julius Gene Latorre, MD, medical director of Upstate University Hospital’s Comprehensive Stroke Center, refers to the telestroke program at Upstate “as stroke care without borders.”

“Through technology we can transport our neurologists 90 miles north of Syracuse and bring the expert care from a Comprehensive Stroke Center to the bedside of patients at Lewis County General Hospital,” Latorre said. “Together with the medical staff of Lewis County General Hospital we can examine the patient and provide the best possible treatment.”

“We are grateful for the opportunity to work with the health care team at Lewis County General Hospital on this special initiative,” Latorre said.

Lewis County General Hospital is a 25-bed critical access hospital, with an emergency department that sees more than 11,000 patients a year.

In addition to Lewis County General Hospital, Upstate’s Comprehensive Stroke Center now provides telemedicine stroke services to seven hospitals throughout the region: Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center in Ogdensburg, River Hospital in Alexandria Bay, Carthage Area Hospital in Carthage, Cortland Regional Medical Center in Cortland, Gouverneur Hospital in Gouverneur, Samaritan Medical Center in Watertown.

Caption: Lewis County General Hospital (LCGH) is the latest hospital to partner with Upstate University Hospital’s Comprehensive Stroke Center’s telestroke program that enables Upstate neurologists to collaborate on stroke care with LCGH medical staff. Members of LGCH’s Emergency Department staff include, from left, are Mark Parshall, MD, medical director; John McCormack, MD; Krista Kloster, RN; Gina Buckingham, RN; and Nick Hanno, nurse manager.

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