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Healthcare PlexusCall: Robot + Cooperation between Hospitals = Better Care for Stroke Patients
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When: Wednesday, August 21, 2013
1-2pm ET

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Healthcare PlexusCall
Wednesday, August 21, 2013, 1:00 pm ET/10:00 am PT
Topic: Robot + Cooperation Between Hospitals = Better Care for Stroke Patients

Guest: Dean Gushee

MP3 File


When someone has a stroke, time is of the essence. Faster diagnosis and immediate treatment can often reduce or eliminate the debilitating effects of a stroke. At Mason General Hospital, a community hospital in southwest Washington State, emergency-room physicians are board-certified in emergency medicine, and trained in stroke diagnosis and treatment. And thanks to St. Peter Hospital, twenty minutes away, there is now a neurologist in the room when needed 24/7, via two-way video and a remote telehealth robot.

Mason General provides medical care to residents of a mostly-rural county that includes mountains, forests, lakes and saltwater shorelines—timber and aquaculture are major employers, along with government and healthcare. The hospital, a Level 4 trauma center, has received a "Most Wired” designation each of the last five years, and a Joint Commission Seal of Excellence.

Dean Gushee, medical director for the emergency department and medical director for the hospital, will join the call to talk about the resources that provide better care for stroke patients—and the cultural changes that were needed to allow separate hospitals, with differing policies and practices, to learn to work together. "Creating cooperative relationships with other institutions to manage a clinical problem and provide better care for the patient is really the story,” Dean commented.

Please bring your experience and your questions and join this conversation.

Dean Gushee, MD, FACEP is a board certified Emergency Physician who practices at Mason General Hospital in Shelton, Washington. He is the medical director for the emergency department as well as the overall medical director for Mason General Hospital and Family of Clinics. He has been affiliated with that institution for about 20 years. He has worked to develop a regional approach to the management of stroke and myocardial infarction partnering with St. Peter Hospital in Olympia. Currently, that partnership is developing the use of robotic technologies for the rapid evaluation and management of complex stroke syndromes.

Prior to his current affiliation he taught in the emergency medicine residency program at the University of California, San Francisco (Fresno program). There, he launched the first private air ambulance service in the central valley of California. Dr. Gushee is an examiner for board certification in emergency medicine with the American Board of Emergency Medicine.

Dr. Gushee is also a trained biological oceanographer having completed his master’s degree from Oregon State University. He combines his interest in medicine with his interest in the natural world in his work with Lindblad-National Geographic as a shipboard and expedition physician. This work has led to a natural interest in wildlife photography and his work has appeared in National Geographic magazine and on the website of the Smithsonian Institution among others.

Contact Dean at


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