POCAHONTAS, AR (KAIT) - The Five Rivers Medical Center will take place in a pilot study going on in Arkansas, which will look at how to better treat stroke patients.
Paula Lewis, the hospital's stroke program manager, said they are 1 of 9 hospitals in the state to be a part of the study.
She explained when a stroke patient is in need of help; EMS will contact a call center in Little Rock.
That call center will direct them to the nearest stroke ready hospital, like Five Rivers Medical Center.
Lewis said the study will help get stroke patients faster care, especially in rural areas.
"They have found that patients may drive a long time to get to a much larger hospital and bypass even smaller hospitals that can take care of stroke patients initially," Lewis said.
She said some patients only have about 4 hours to get the medicine they need and driving to larger hospitals could take away precious time.
Despite their size, Lewis said they use telemedicine to consult with neurologists at UAMS when working with a stroke patient.
She said the hospital is very proud to help provide information that could help others in the future.
The study is scheduled to begin August 1st and will collect data for about six months.
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