Sierra View Medical Center Advanced Primary Stroke Center

SVMC has earned The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval® and holds the Advanced Primary Stroke Center Certification. SVMC also received the American Heart Association's Get With The Guidelines® - Stroke GOLD PLUS with Target: Type 2 Diabetes Honor Roll award. Patients from Porterville and surrounding communities have access to receive nationally certified care within their local health care district.

Don’t Delay Stroke Care Due to the Pandemic

A Special Message from the Stroke Program Leaders

When an emergency strikes, hospitals, including SVMC is the safest place – even during a pandemic. Do not hesitate to call 911 at the first sign of a stroke. Several people have questions while the fast changing health crisis is still present. Find common questions about the virus and your safety and health by visiting the American Stroke Association website: stroke.org

About the SVMC Stroke Program

Stroke ranks No. 5 among all causes of death in the United States and accounts for approximately 1 of every 19 deaths. Given these statistics, Sierra View Medical Center’s Stroke Program is committed to providing the best care. SVMC cares for the approximate 200 stroke patients each year. The total volume of stroke patients at SVMC has grown 10% per year since 2017. Since 2017, there has been a revision of project charter, a stroke committee reconvened and further development of stroke-related processes to get the program to where it is today.

By receiving the Joint Commission's Primary Stroke Certification and the highest standard of Gold Plus, proves that the SVMC Stroke Program operates with high performing quality of care, is consistent with outcomes and ensures a patient spends the least time possible in the hospital with better functional recovery. The Joint Commission standards are developed in consultation with health care experts, providers, measurement experts and patients.

Scope and Services

24 hours, 7 days a week, SVMC is here for stroke and transient ischemic attack patients.

SVMC provides total stroke care to community members ages 18 and older. The stroke team includes everyone from emergency to inpatient services. All strokes are considered high acuity and handled by the rapid response team that provide the best practices possible to those whose diagnosis and care is time sensitive. This team is a multidisciplinary by design and lead by experts.

SVMC is partnered with TeleSpecialists to provide TeleNeurology services, which allows a Neurologist to be by the bedside within minutes using the latest technology, through an interactive video conferencing platform. This physician directs care of the potential stroke patient, whether in the Emergency Department or elsewhere in the hospital. The direction of care is driven by the goal of bringing the most appropriate treatment to the patient in an expedited manner. SVMC’s providers work closely with the Neurologists and maintain open communication making for a smooth process during a stroke alert.

Ischemic stroke

SVMC administers a clot-busting drug, known as Alteplase – or TPA, for ischemic stroke patients. This is the standard of care for stroke and allows patients to remain in their home community. They are in the hospital less time, and have better functional outcomes at discharge.

Preventing & Treating Strokes

Stroke alert is the emergent process for the recognition and treatment of acute stroke patients who present to SVMC and are potential candidates for pharmacologic, mechanical intervention, or neurosurgical treatment.

SVMC promotes the acronym, B.E. F.A.S.T.

In addition to B.E. F.A.S.T., stroke symptoms include:

  • Sudden weakness or numbness
  • Sudden confusion, or trouble speaking / understanding
  • Sudden visual changes or loss of vision
  • Sudden difficulty swallowing
  • Sudden severe headache

Read and learn more about prevention and treatment by visiting the following links.

  • Stroke Risk Reduction
  • Risk factors
  • Patient Education

Meet the Stroke Program Team

A multidisciplinary committee of department directors, managers and hospital physicians is pivotal in the support and provision of stroke care.

  • Stroke & Sepsis Program Analyst, Karen Taylor
  • Stroke Program Medical Director, Dr. Thiagarajan, MD
  • Stroke & Sepsis Coordinator, Laura Soares, RN, MSN, SCRN
  • VP of Quality and Regulatory Affairs, Hospital Administration, Dr. Melissa Fuentes

Mission Statement

The mission of the stroke program is to promote health through primary prevention, ensure access to the highest standard of stroke care through advanced medicine and collaborative partnerships supported by evidence-based practice.

Program Contract Information

Laura Soares, RN, MSN, SCRN, Stroke & Sepsis Coordinator

(559) 788-6067
SVMC Stroke Program

465 West Putnam Avenue, Porterville, CA 93257