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GBHS Owen Sound Hospital – Centralizing stroke care in Grey Bruce

Owen Sound ON – Grey Bruce Health Services' (GBHS) is part of the South West Stroke Project, which is realigning stroke care in the South West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) area to ensure people who have a stroke or TIA (transient ischemic attack or mini-stroke) receive the best possible stroke care, with the best change for a full recovery.

GBHS' Owen Sound Hospital has become one of seven Designated Stroke Centres in the SW LHIN region, and staff has received specialized training in the rapid assessment and treatment of stroke patients.

Individuals who are experiencing symptoms of a stroke should call 9-1-1 immediately. EMS will take patients to the nearest Designated Stroke Centre. tPA is considered most effective if provided within 3.5 hours of the onset of stroke symptoms, and is only available at Designated Stroke Centres.

By the end of March 2017, all stroke patients in Grey and Bruce will be treated at the Designated Stroke Centre at the Owen Sound Hospital.

The GBHS designated stroke team consists of  experts who provide acute stroke unit care, inpatient stroke rehabilitation, community rehabilitation programs, and a variety of stroke services including speech, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, dietitian, social work, nurse practitioner and stroke education.

For more information on the South West Stroke Project:  

View the Grey Bruce stroke video, highlighting the importance of calling 9-1-1: Stroke - Call 9-1-1


"In realigning stroke services, we are helping to ensure people across our LHIN are getting equitable access to best practice stroke care. Stroke survivors have the best outcomes when they are cared for in a centre that specializes in stroke services and provides best practice care. These changes to how we deliver stroke care are helping to reduce mortality and improve the outcomes of stroke survivors throughout our geography."

– Michael Barrett, CEO, South West LHIN

"Patients who come in with stroke symptoms receive a CT scan for accurate diagnosis, and if appropriate, they are treated with tPA, a clot busting medication that can potentially reduce or eliminate the damaging effects of stroke, all within 60 minutes."

- Joan Ruston-Berge, GBHS, Manager, Rehab and Stroke

"Grey County Paramedic Services is pleased to partner with the South West Stroke Project and local health care facilities to ensure patients having a stroke receive the highest possible level of care."

- Mike Muir, Director, Grey County Paramedic Services

"Recognizing the signs and symptoms of stroke and calling 911 immediately ensures paramedics can begin stroke care quickly and get the patient to the appropriate hospital for prompt treatment."

- Raymond Lux, Acting Chief of Bruce County Paramedic Services

Quick Facts

Each year in the South West LHIN about 3,500 people in emergency departments are diagnosed with a stroke/TIA (transient ischemic attack or mini-stroke), or a suspected stroke/TIA.

To improve care and outcomes, inpatient acute and rehabilitative stroke care in the South West LHIN will be realigned to the following Designated Stroke Centres by March 2017:

  • London Health Sciences Centre's University Hospital – hyperacute and acute
  • Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance's Stratford General Hospital – hyperacute, acute and inpatient rehabilitation
  • Grey Bruce Health Services' Owen Sound Hospital - hyperacute, acute and inpatient rehabilitation
  • St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital - acute and inpatient rehabilitation
  • St. Joseph's Health Care London's Parkwood Institute – inpatient rehabilitation
  • Woodstock Hospital – inpatient rehabilitation
  • Alexandra Marine and General Hospital (Goderich) – telestroke services

Media contacts

Grey Bruce Health Services     
Nicole Schmidt                                                          
519-376-2121 ext. 2805                                                                                   

South West Local Health Integration Network
Ashley Jackson
Direct: 519-640-2604
Cell: 519-854-8808; Toll Free: 1-866-294-5446 

About the South West Local Health Integration Network
The South West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) is a crown agency responsible for the planning, integration and funding of nearly 200 health service providers including hospitals, long-term care homes, mental health and addictions agencies, community support services, community health centres, and the South West Community Care Access Centre. The South West covers an area from Lake Erie to the Bruce Peninsula and is home to almost one million people. Click here for more information.

About the Southwestern Ontario Stroke Network
The Southwestern Ontario Stroke Network (SWOSN) is 1 of 11 stroke networks in Ontario providing leadership and planning to implement best practice stroke care across the continuum of care. As part of the Ontario Stroke System, our visionis: Fewer Stroke. Better Outcomes. Our mission is to continuously improve stroke prevention, care, recovery and re-integration.
This is achieved by collaborating with partners to re-organize stroke care delivery to ensure that all Ontarians have access to appropriate, quality stroke care in a timely manner. Click here for more information.

About the South West Stroke Project
The South West Stroke Project is improving outcomes for people in the South West Local Health Integration Network who have a stroke or TIA (transient ischemic attack).  Phase I of this project is focusing on realigning inpatient acute and rehabilitative care from 28 hospital sites to 7 Designated Stroke Centres.   Phase II of this project is creating recommendations to enhance care for people with stroke and TIA after they leave the hospital; this includes secondary stroke prevention, outpatient and community rehabilitation and stroke recovery services. Visit for more information. Click here for more information.

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