Tampa General Hospital among the elite stroke centers in the country

USF stroke experts staff the TGH Stroke Center, providing patients in the Tampa Bay region with 24/7 access to more specialized stroke care, including on-site neurosurgeons and medical teams trained in neurocritical care.

TAMPA, FL (Dec. 8, 2014) – Tampa General Hospital is the first hospital on the west coast of Florida to be awarded Comprehensive Stroke Certification, the highest national designation from the Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program, a national certification organization recognized by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.


The new state-of-the-art Bayshore Pavillion at TGH has a dedicated Stroke Unit, a Trauma Resuscitation Unit and full capability CT and MRI scan in the Emergency Department; dedicated neuroangiography suites; and a Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit, which is one of the largest in the country.

This elite designation means the hospital meets the highest standards for safety and quality and can treat patients 24 hours a day with the most complex state-of-the-art stroke care.  Tampa General earned the national designation by meeting 21 evidence-based measures of complex stroke care. Continuous on-site neurologists, neurosurgeons, diagnostic radiologists and medical teams trained in neurocritical care are ready to treat emergencies immediately with highly trained and qualified nursing staff. Studies show that stroke patients have better outcomes when these standards are met.

“This provides an external validation for what we’ve known for a long time,” said Dr. W. Scott Burgin, director of Tampa General’s Comprehensive Stroke Center and professor of Neurology and chief of the Cerebrovascular Division at the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine.

“We are providing the highest level of care for our patients at Tampa General. Every stroke is different, and sometimes there are complications that require extremely specialized care that can only be found at comprehensive centers with a team on hand 24 hours a day who are trained to handle those complications.”

Burgin_Scott new vert crop

USF Health’s Dr. Scott Burgin directs the TGH Comprehensive Stroke Center.

Tampa General is the fourth hospital in the state to receive this national designation for its stroke program. It also is one of 34 Florida hospitals designated as a state Comprehensive Stroke Center, and one of 124 that the Joint Commission certifies as a Primary Stroke Center.

“This certification signifies that Tampa General Hospital has demonstrated and is clearly committed to advancing stroke treatment through innovation and best practice – placing them amongst world leaders,” said Michael Zarski, chief executive officer of HFAP. “Hospitals that have established stroke centers have demonstrated improved treatment, better patient outcomes, and reduced costs. In addition, Comprehensive Stroke centers are a resource to both the community and neighboring hospitals who are not equipped to offer the same level of care.”

Strokes occur when blood flow is disrupted in the brain. A clot can block a blood vessel, or bleeding can occur. If brain cells can’t receive blood and oxygen, they start to die, causing permanent damage. About 795,000 Americans have a stroke each year, making stroke the 4th leading cause of death in the U.S.

A stroke requires immediate emergency treatment and every minute counts. You can use the “FAST” acronym to recognize warning signs of a stroke: “Face drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty, Time to call 911.”


-Tampa General Hospital-

Tampa General is a 1018-bed academic medical center on the west coast of Florida that serves as the region’s only center for Level l trauma, comprehensive burn care, and adult solid organ transplants. It is the primary teaching hospital for the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. TGH is a comprehensive stroke center and a state-certified spinal cord and brain injury rehabilitation center. For more information, go to www.tgh.org.

Media contact: Lisa Greene
Public Relations Editor
(813) 844-3832