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Barrow and Phoenix FD team up on new mobile stroke victim unit

Phoenix Fire and Barrow Neurological Institute announce a revolutionized equipped and staffed mobile emergency unit that will provide early diagnosis and treatment to many Phoenix stroke victims.

PHOENIX – The Barrow Neurological Institute and the Phoenix Fire Department announced a new partnership this week that will transform how stroke victims receive medical treatment in Phoenix.

“Because we know that fast treatment can greatly reduce the effects of stroke, we’ve adopted this new method to change the way stroke victims are treated,” said Dr. Michael Waters, director of the stroke program at Barrow Neurological Institute. “By deploying a mobile emergency room that includes the latest technology and medical expertise, we will be able to treat stroke patients much quicker than traditional methods.”

Phoenix Fire Chief Kara Kalkbrenner says this represents an important step in the collaboration between emergency responders and the medical community.

“This is one additional way emergency response systems and the medical community are working together to continue to provide the most advanced care and support to Phoenix residents,” Kalkbrenner said. “Barrow and Phoenix Fire both have unique positions and skill sets and this partnership is bringing those traits together to improve the health and well-being of our community.”

Barrow anticipates the mobile stroke unit will respond to over 1,500 calls annually.

The Barrow Emergency Stroke Treatment Unit will be the first of its kind in the U.S. that operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year in a city with a population greater than 1 million.

According to the CDC, stroke causes 1 of every 20 deaths, killing more than 130,000 people in the United States each year.

To date, there are 10 active mobile stroke units throughout the United States.

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