In the survey at Cedars last week, he says, the commission's review team "is assuring patient safety with a fine-toothed comb in every conceivable aspect of stroke care."
Lyden, who helped lead the clinical trial showing that tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) was effective at busting clots in stroke patients if they received it within three hours, says that certain difficult patients will see a benefit from better care at a comprehensive stroke center than at a primary stroke center.
"The beauty of this, for us and for patients, is really to make it very clear to the public who's qualified to be doing this sort of thing, and who's not. Today, you have situations where there are well-intentioned neurologists and surgeons who don't know what they're dealing with."
Hampel says more centers will be announced in the next few months. She does not know how many comprehensive stroke designations the country should have because it depends on each community's resources.
The Joint Commission's requirements for comprehensive stroke centers were developed with American Heart Association and American Stroke Association.