November 7, 1996 in Idaho

New Services Offered To Treat Strokes

From Staff And Wire Reports

Two new services will be offered by St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center to treat strokes and sleep disorders.

The hospital already handles stroke victims, mixing them in with other intensive-care patients. Those patients now will go to a special, four-bed unit.

“It puts stroke patients in a central locale, so they can be monitored by nurses, by the neurology team on an hourly basis,” said Dr. Christian Zimmerman, chairman of the Idaho Neurological Institute at St. Al’s.

With a new unit, St. Al’s also will be in a better position to take part in clinical trials of promising drugs that could prove helpful in treating the symptoms.

The new stroke and sleep centers are part of a $640,000 rebuilding of the hospital’s sixth floor, where the Idaho Neurological Institute is located.

The new sleep center provides comprehensive treatment of chronic insomnia and other sleep disorders. In the past, St. Al’s could perform only limited sleep studies and only on patients admitted to the hospital.

The sleep center at St. Al’s is not yet accredited by the American Sleep Disorders Association, but is working on it, officials said. It makes a difference.

MSB/Blue Shield of Idaho, the state’s second-largest insurer, will not pay for sleep studies at unaccredited centers.

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