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May 2, 2023

All ThedaCare Hospitals Earn Stroke Care Certifications

Providing Complete Stroke Care for Patients and Families

ThedaCare is proud to announce that the system has received stroke care accreditations from DNV GL – Healthcare for all seven hospitals serving Northeast and Central Wisconsin. 

“With strokes, the quicker a person begins care in a hospital or with trained medical providers, more treatment options are available, potentially leading to better outcomes,” said Dr. Mark Cockley, Chief Clinical Officer and President of ThedaCare’s Clinically Integrated Network. “It is critical that our community members have access to certified stroke care, and higher levels of care when needed.”

The highest level of stroke care within the ThedaCare system can be found at ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Neenah, which has been recertified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center. ThedaCare was awarded initial certification in 2019.

“Being certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center means that patients and families have access to the critical care they need, close to home,” said Dr. Cockley. “By enhancing coordinated stroke care, ThedaCare can live our mission of improving the health and well-being of the communities.”

The DNV GL – Healthcare Comprehensive Stroke Center Certification is based on standards set forth by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association, and affirms that the medical center addresses the full spectrum of stroke care – diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation and education – and establishes clear metrics to evaluate outcomes.

ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Neenah has a long history of providing stroke care for the communities in Northeast and Central Wisconsin. A Comprehensive Stroke Center has the specialists, infrastructure and resources needed to care for the most severe stroke patient.

The Comprehensive Stroke Center at ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Neenah has partnerships with first responders and rural hospitals, and a 24-hour acute care to provide the best care. The stroke team also provides virtual consultation to patients at ThedaCare Critical Access Hospitals to determine the correct action of care that is needed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates nearly 800,000 Americans suffer a stroke each year. Strokes – especially ischemic strokes, which block blood flow to the brain – are the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S.

“Because of the time-critical nature of stroke events, hospital systems must have the best teams and resources available, and also the ability to act with efficiency,” said Thomas Mattio, PhD, MD, neurologist with the Neuroscience Group and Medical Director of the ThedaCare Comprehensive Stroke Center. “We are proud that our team members are committed to helping patients preserve quality of life through a structured and methodical process designed to produce quality and safe outcomes.”

ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Appleton – Primary Stroke Center

In addition to ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Neenah’s Comprehensive Stroke Center, ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Appleton has also been accredited as a Primary Stroke Center. According to DNV GL – Healthcare, this certification is earned by hospitals which has the necessary staffing, infrastructure and programs to stabilize and treat most emergent stroke patients. A Primary Stroke Center can also provide treatment to a broader range of stroke conditions and is able to provide some acute therapies, as well as admit patients to a designated stroke unit or to beds, specifically assigned for stroke care. It can also serve as a resource center for other facilities in the region, including being a main transfer site for stabilized patients.

“With strokes, coordinated care will extend after the emergency response,” explained Dr. Mattio. “To have multiple levels of stroke care within the ThedaCare system, it ensures we have physician specialists, neurology-focused nursing care and rehabilitation services to help patients and their families through recovery.”

Acute Stroke Ready Certifications

Five ThedaCare Critical Access hospitals, including ThedaCare Medical Center-Berlin, ThedaCare Medical Center-New London, ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano, ThedaCare Medical Center-Waupaca and ThedaCare Medical Center-Wild Rose, have all earned Acute Stroke Ready certifications also from DNV GL – Healthcare. This certification allows smaller and rural hospitals to demonstrate excellence by complying with standards of care for the initial treatment of stroke patients, when rapid action and proper medications can save lives and limit the long-term disabling effects of strokes. Each of the hospitals also have an on-site Stroke Program Coordinator to ensure teams have the tools, resources and knowledge they need to continue to care for patients suffering from a stroke.

These hospitals are an important part of ThedaCare’s Stroke Program. The hospitals are equipped to evaluate, stabilize and provide emergency care to patients with acute stroke symptoms. An Acute Stroke Ready hospital has the infrastructure and capability to care for acute stroke, including team members and resources able to diagnose, stabilize, treat, and transfer stroke patients. 

Most patients may be transferred to a Primary Stroke Center or a Comprehensive Stroke Center that would provide ongoing care after initial treatment and stabilization. For more information about strokes and care options available, please visit:

About ThedaCare

For more than 110 years, ThedaCare® has been committed to improving the health and well-being of the communities it serves in Northeast and Central Wisconsin. The organization delivers care to more than 600,000 residents in 17 counties and employs approximately 7,000 health care professionals. ThedaCare has 180 points of care, including eight hospitals. As an organization committed to being a leader in Population Health, team members are dedicated to empowering people to live their unique, best lives. ThedaCare also partners with communities to understand needs, finding solutions together, and encouraging health awareness and action. ThedaCare is the first in Wisconsin to be a Mayo Clinic Care Network Member, giving specialists the ability to consult with Mayo Clinic experts about a patient’s care. ThedaCare is proud to partner with Children’s Wisconsin and Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin health network to enhance convenient access to the most advanced levels of specialty care. ThedaCare is a not-for-profit health system with a level II trauma center, comprehensive cancer treatment, stroke and cardiac programs, as well as primary care.