Cerebrovascular Disease

Mobile Stroke Unit Response Time

Mobile Stroke Treatment Unit Response Time

2018 – 2022

Cleveland Clinic’s mobile stroke treatment unit (MSTU) — one of the first units of its kind in the US — was launched to shorten the time between the onset of a patient’s stroke-like symptoms and the delivery of life- and disability-sparing therapies for stroke. The unit is operated by specialized staff who use its advanced equipment to allow Cleveland Clinic stroke physicians to swiftly diagnose and treat stroke patients prior to arrival in an emergency department. The MSTU team's goal is the efficient evaluation, treatment, and transport of patients suffering from stroke and other neurological emergencies. Time to treatment is an important factor in stroke treatment, and the MSTU team continually works toward more efficient processes. Patients with severe stroke symptoms benefit more from care at comprehensive and thrombectomy-capable stroke centers. A critical part of the MSTU mission is to get the right patient to the right hospital the first time, avoiding the need for a second ambulance transport. Since it was launched in July 2014, Cleveland Clinic’s MSTU has transported more than 1800 stroke patients, administered IV thrombolysis to more than 200 patients, transported more than 125 brain hemorrhage patients, and helped more than 120 patients undergo a thrombectomy procedure to remove a blood clot from the brain. In 2021, Cleveland Clinic’s MSTU was able to administer IV thrombolysis 37 minutes faster on average than if a patient was transported to an emergency department using a traditional ambulance. Commitment to this level of service has resulted in care that consistently beats targets and improves patient outcomes.

MSTU = mobile stroke treatment unit, t-PA = tissue plasminogen activator