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Riverton Hospital earns stroke treatment certification

RIVERTON — Intermountain Healthcare's Riverton Hospital recently got the go-ahead from state health officials to accept and treat stroke patients in the emergency room.

The designation, a certification given by the Utah Department of Health and the Utah Hospitals and Health Systems Association, recognizes Riverton for having procedures, equipment and protocols in place to provide time-critical emergency stroke care.

"With a stroke, every minute counts," said Riverton Hospital administrator Blair Kent. "The sooner a person can be evaluated and treated, the greater the chance of lessening the effects of the stroke."

The hospital sought the certification, Kent said, "because it is the right thing for our patients and for our community."

Stroke is the third-leading cause of death in the United States and a leading cause of serious, long-term disability, according to the American Stroke Association. On average nationally, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, someone dies of a stroke every three minutes, and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

Wendy Leonard Twitter: wendyleonards