Knowledge of Thrombolytic Therapy Amongst Hospital Staff
Preliminary Results and Treatment Implications
Background and Purpose—In-hospital stroke is associated with slower access to thrombolysis than community-occurring stroke. It has been suggested that lack of knowledge regarding appropriate stroke response among hospital staff may contribute to delays in referral, assessment, and treatment of in-hospital stroke.
Method—A survey was conducted among hospital ward staff members using the Stroke Awareness Questionnaire, which was adapted for use among hospital staff to assess their knowledge of stroke symptoms, acute treatments, and hospital protocols for treatment of stroke.
Results—Ninety-six staff members were interviewed, 81% of whom were clinical staff (medical, nursing, allied health professionals). Ninety-two percent of staff could name ≥3 stroke symptoms. Only 49% of staff were aware of thrombolysis treatment, and only 48% could identify the time window for thrombolysis administration, with staff from stroke-related specialties likely to name thrombolysis as an acute treatment for stroke (71%; odds ratio =3.36, 95% confidence interval 1.17–9.61) and identify the correct treatment window (71%; odds ratio =3.55, 95% confidence interval 1.24–10.16). Only 52% of staff on general wards were aware of an in-hospital stroke protocol.
Conclusions—Hospital staff had adequate knowledge of stroke signs and symptoms; however, there was low awareness of thrombolysis therapy and its correct treatment time window among hospital staff. Targeted educational programmes among hospital staff regarding stroke are required to optimize acute stroke care.
- Received June 9, 2015.
- Revision received August 28, 2015.
- Accepted September 8, 2015.
- © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.