The Benefits of Mobile Stroke Units: Alvin Wang, DO, BC-EMS

SAP Partner | <b>Vickie and Jack Farber Institute for Neuroscience</b>

The chief of emergency medical services at Jefferson Health spoke about the operation of the Jefferson mobile stroke unit in the field, and the impact that the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic had on launching the program. [WATCH TIME: 3 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 3 minutes

“There are so many areas that I feel this MSU has improved stroke care in this region that I feel that it’s hard to even answer [what the biggest has been] or ascribe to just one. The time-sensitive nature, absolutely, but even just the opportunity to have some education in the field. The MSU is a big draw at community days, and our crews are happy to go out and just talk to people.”­­­

May is nationally celebrated in the United States as Stroke Awareness Month, and this year also denotes the second anniversary of the Jefferson Health mobile stroke unit (MSU) program. The MSU was rolled out to the area surrounding Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, including Bensalem, whose emergency medical services (EMS) squad operates the Jefferson MSU.

In celebration of that milestone and the improvements in case that the MSU has helped to produce, Jefferson held an EMS Education event in Bensalem on May 19, to examine the progress that the program has made and share the experiences of the Bensalem EMS team. In the last 2 years, patients in the area surrounding Philadelphia have experienced significant changes, with faster times for both thrombectomy and tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) application since the program kicked off.

While on-site at the event, Alvin Wang, DO, BC-EMS, chief, emergency medical services, Jefferson Health, sat down with NeurologyLive® to share his perspective. He spoke about the secondary benefits of having an MSU in the area, such as the downstream community stroke educational efforts it helps to drive by just being present in the area. Additionally, he pointed to the importance of the buy-in from Jefferson’s partners in the MSU program, such as the EMS agencies, in making it effective. Wang also shared his experience having launched this MSU program during the COVID-19 pandemic, and whether or not it had an impact on the care the MSU could provide.