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Published on January 20, 2016

Pelham Medical Center: Greer’s First & Only Certified Primary Stroke Center

Greer's Only Certified Primary Stroke Center

Pelham Medical Center Receives Certification

Pelham Medical Center (PMC), part of Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, has received Primary Stroke Certification from the Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program (HFAP). This certification designates Pelham Medical Center as being Greer’s first and only certified primary stroke center.

Pelham Medical Center is part of an elite group of providers focused on complex stroke care. Primary Stroke Centers are recognized as industry leaders and are responsible for setting the national agenda in highly specialized stroke care.

“Our team is proud to be a primary stroke center for patients in the Upstate,” said Tony Kouskolekas, president of PMC. “Our commitment is to offer the services our community needs; expanding our ability to care for stroke patients is something we think will be vital to our community. Stroke patients have a small window to receive clot-busting care after a stroke and Pelham Medical Center is prepared to provide fast care.”

The medical director of the Primary Stroke Center is neurologist John Pilch, MD, who joined the Medical Group of the Carolinas—Neurology—Pelham in September.

An HFAP Primary Stroke Center Certification is based on quality-driven stroke processes in the care program. The certification is based on evidence-based, nationally established standards. A certified stroke center allows patients to receive the best possible care from the time the stroke happens through recovery. Stroke centers have quality guided protocols and processes in place to allow rapid identification and timely treatment of stroke, which help reduce disability.

Stroke is the leading cause of long-term disability and the fifth leading cause of death in the United States, with more than 800,000 strokes occurring each year. Some risk factors for stroke include high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, tobacco use, drug abuse, or lack of exercise.

This stroke certification as a primary stroke centers means we have quality guided protocols and processes in place to allow for rapid identification and timely treatment of stroke. These protocols help to reduce disabilities and improve patient outcomes following a stroke.

Patients have less than two hours after experiencing stroke symptoms to get to the hospital to be evaluated for medication that can help reduce disability.

Stroke patients need to be evaluated quickly to determine if they are eligible for clot busting medication. It is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of stroke and call 9-1-1 immediately to avoid any delays in treatment.


“Act FAST” if You Experience the Following:

F - Face Drooping: One side of the face is drooping or numb

A - Arm Weakness: One arm is weak or numb

S - Speech Difficulty: Speech is slurred or a person is unable to speak or be understood

T - Time to Call 9-1-1: Call 9-1-1 if any of these symptoms occur.

Spartanburg Medical Center (SMC) is also a certified Primary Stroke Center recognized by the HFAP. SMC was the first accredited program in South Carolina recognized by the Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program.

The HFAP initiated the Primary Stroke Certification program in 2006 using recommendations from the Brain Attack Coalition as the foundation for its standards. Moving forward, HFAP has also endorsed the American Heart Association’s Get with the Guidelines tool for patient management and performance measure.

The HFAP is one of only three national voluntary accreditation programs authorized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to survey hospitals for compliance with the Medicare Conditions of Participation and Coverage.

Stroke Information

About Pelham Medical Center

Offering emergency services, world-class cancer treatment, and surgical care and primary care, Pelham Medical Center is located at Westmoreland Road and Highway 14 in Greer, SC. Pelham Medical Center consists of 48 inpatient rooms, four intensive care rooms and areas with telemetry for monitoring cardiac patients. The facility also has four operating suites and an emergency department with 11 rooms. The medical center complex includes the Medical Office Building, the Surgery Center at Pelham and the Gibbs Cancer Center & Research Institute at Pelham.

About Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System

Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System (SRHS) offers a full spectrum of services through four hospitals: Spartanburg Medical Center, Pelham Medical Center, Spartanburg Hospital for Restorative Care and Union Medical Center. SRHS also includes Ellen Sagar Nursing Center, 113-bed long-term care, skilled nursing facility that offers nursing care and rehabilitation services. SRHS provides unparalleled oncological care through the Gibbs Cancer Center & Research Institute. The multidisciplinary Medical Group of the Carolinas has more than 300 physicians across seven counties in two states. SRHS employs nearly 6,000 associates and offers outpatient surgery centers, a vibrant post-acute division, a Level I Trauma Center, and Advicare, a licensed Health Maintenance Organization (HMO). Advicare provides Medicaid services to residents throughout the state of South Carolina. U.S. News and World Report ranked Spartanburg Medical Center the No. 1 regional hospital in South Carolina in 2014-15. The Commission on Cancer gave Gibbs Cancer Center & Research Institute its Outstanding Achievement Award.

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Spartanburg Regional Fact Sheet

Learn more about the Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System.

Fact Sheet