A community activist, Nola Theiss works tirelessly to help people in need.
“Well, human trafficking is modern day slavery,” says Theiss.
She is able to continue her campaign, finding and helping victims. When only a few years ago she needed help and got it from Gulf Coast Medical Center, the area’s top stroke center.
“They saved my life three years ago because I had a stroke and was taken directly there and I got the medication I needed - and three days later most, 95% of the residual effects, were gone,” says Theiss.
Stroke deaths in the US have been dropping for more than 100 years and fell 30% in the past decade. The CDC now ranks stroke as the fourth leading cause of death, down from number three. Better prevention and better care post-stroke are thought to be reasons.
“We started up a new protocol here back in 2010 that we call Code S. When a patient has a possible stroke or a TIA that it’s identified by the EMS, they go ahead and notify the hospital. The second the patient comes through the door we already know what we’re waiting for. With this protocol we’ve been able to monitor our progress. Our goal is 60 minutes and we’ve been able to meet that 60 minutes for the majority of it,” says Dr. Nima Mowzoon, neurologist on Lee Memorial Health System’s medical staff.
The wider use of clot-busters, including an expansion of the window in which they need to be administered has helped greatly, and so has coordinated efforts to speed patients into treatment.
“People are doing much better with strokes and strokes are survivable now. And with the treatments and therapies and everything that comes afterwards we do a much better job,” says Dr. Mowzoon.
Doing a better job, so people like Theiss can heal and get back to work.