AN announcement that stroke services in the county will be centred on Worcestershire Royal Hospital has been welcomed by the city’s MP.

People calling for an ambulance for stroke symptoms will be taken to the hospital from Wednesday, following the opening of the Surgical clinical decisions unit in May this year.

The acute hospitals project team has been working hard for the last 12 months after a decision was passed in 2012 at the health overview and scrutiny committee to improve stroke services in Worcestershire.

The stroke unit at Worcester has a hyper acute stroke unit (HASU), acute stroke ward and an additional two consultants in the team, both with expertise in thrombolysis.

There is also a nursing team specifically trained to care for stroke patients and support from physiotherapists, dietitians and occupational therapists.

Robin Walker MP said that stroke patients needed rapid access to the best expert clinicians and the best equipment as soon as possible.

He said: “Having had cases of stroke in the family I am well aware of the importance of high quality emergency and rehabilitation services.

“I am hopeful that the changes announced today will help to improve stroke services in the county and make sure that more stroke sufferers in Worcestershire make a full recovery.”

The Trust’s TIA (high risk) outpatient clinics will not change and will continue to be held in Worcester from Monday to Wednesday, Kidderminster on Thursday and the Alexandra, Redditch, on Friday.

The surgical clinical decisions unit aims to see patients quickly and have them directed to the right scans and clinical experts which can be critical in cases of stroke.

Mr Walker has sought assurances from the Acute Trust that careful thought will be given to pathways for recovery and rehabilitation and they have confirmed that Worcester patients will go to Timberdine in Battenahll, Worcester, Redditch patients to the Princess of Wales Community Hospital and Wyre Forest patients to Cookley.