Perron Institute Medical Director David Blacker and the stroke unit at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital have been recognised with a prestigious World Stroke Organization Angels Gold Status Award.

SCGH Stroke Unit Head Dr Thomas Chemmanam said this recognition for meeting the highest standards in stroke treatment and care was a great honour and testament to a team effort to enhance stroke care in the local area.

Dr Blacker and Ellen Baker started Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital’s rapid response “code stroke” team in August 2003, the same month the Therapeutic Goods Administration approved tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) as an intravenous clot busting therapy for ischemic stroke.

“Dr Blacker’s vision and leadership have been instrumental in the evolution of the stroke unit into a state of the art service,” Dr Chemmanam said.

Stroke is a time-critical medical emergency. Acting quickly on the signs of stroke and implementing best practice care requires coordinated multidisciplinary teamwork involving paramedics, emergency department, diagnostic and interventional radiologists and stroke unit staff.

SCGH Neurology Department Head and Perron Institute consultant neurologist Dr Janavi Dunuwille commented that the award was a testament to the teamwork across departments working together to achieve the best outcome for patients.

Dr Dunuwille thanked all the Neurology consultants at SCGH for supporting the stroke service, especially after-hours and weekends, and the hospital’s executive team.

World Stroke Organization Angels Award recipients for 2021 were announced at the Stroke Society of Australasia annual scientific meeting at Perth Convention Centre. The award was presented to Dr Blacker by Dr Darshan Ghia, Head of Stroke at Fiona Stanley Hospital and Chair of the meeting organising committee.

Congratulations, Dr Blacker, Dr Chemmanam and the SCGH stroke team, including Professor Graeme Hankey.