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Arkansas Travelers to Host ‘Strike Out Stroke Night’ May 2

Event highlights "Arkansas Stroke Assistance through Virtual Emergency Support" program.
LITTLE ROCK, AR - The Arkansas Travelers baseball team is making its May 2 game “Strike Out Stroke Night.”

It's all part of an effort to help Arkansans learn how to survive a stroke. The special night is in partnership with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS)-led statewide stroke program, AR SAVES.

A helicopter will bring Nicolas Bianchi, AR SAVES medical director, to the field at North Little Rock’s Dickey-Stephens Park to deliver baseballs for the first three pitches. The first, second and third pitches — all strikes against stroke — will be thrown by three stroke survivors who were helped through the AR SAVES program. Gates will open at 6 p.m., and the game starts at 7:10 p.m. against the Tulsa Drillers.

Volunteers from AR SAVES (Arkansas Stroke Assistance through Virtual Emergency Support) sites around the state will work at stroke education booths, and brain-shaped stress toys will be thrown into the stands.

AR SAVES stroke survivors will be honored guests at the game. Their presence in a reserved seating section will serve as a reminder to others that getting to the hospital quickly can prevent stroke death and disability.

Arkansas ranks first in the nation in stroke death rates. Surviving a stroke is becoming more likely as more community hospitals join the SAVES network. The program uses a high-speed video communications system to help provide immediate, life-saving treatments to stroke patients 24 hours a day. The real-time video communication enables a stroke neurologist to evaluate whether emergency room physicians should use a powerful blood thinner within the critical 4.5-hour period following the first signs of stroke.

“This is an important part of UAMS’ mission — reaching out to other areas of the state and helping local physicians identify patients with stroke and improve the patients’ outcomes,” said Michael Manley, director of AR SAVES. 

The AR SAVES program is a partnership between the UAMS Center for Distance Health, the state Department of Human Services, Sparks Regional Health System in Fort Smith, and 41 Arkansas hospitals.
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