The Stroke Center of Appalachian Regional Healthcare System is certified by The Joint Commission for Primary Stroke Centers as an Advanced Primary Stroke Center following a detailed, on-site re-certification review of the hospital in January 2017. The certification is based on the recommendations for primary stroke centers published by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association’s statements/guidelines for stroke care.

Our focus is to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients presenting with stroke symptoms. The Stroke Team is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to diagnose patients and provide the care needed to achieve the best possible outcomes.

Please feel free to contact Debbie Shook, the Coordinator for the Stroke Program at (828) 262-4174, if you have any questions about the services offered.

Telestroke Technology

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center has partnered with Appalachian Regional Healthcare System (ARHS) to provide Telestroke services at Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital.

The Wake Forest Baptist Telestroke Network serves in approximately 24 counties in western North Carolina and southern Virginia. Its goal is to assist community hospitals in their efforts to prevent death and reduce disability caused by strokes. By collaborating with the Telestroke Network, ARHS now has access to 24/7 acute stroke experts via two-way real time video consultation. Thanks to this network, emergency room physicians are able to receive on demand consultation to help diagnose strokes, develop care plans and take action if necessary.

Learn more about Telestroke Technology at Appalachian Regional Healthcare System.

What is a Stroke?

A stroke or “brain attack” occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery or a blood vessel breaks, interrupting blood flow to an area of the brain. Brain cells begin to die and brain damage occurs. Abilities controlled by that area of the brain are lost, i.e. speech, movement and memory. How a stroke patient is affected depends on where the stroke occurs in the brain and how much the brain is damaged.

Think F.A.S.T.

If you think someone is having a stroke, think F.A.S.T. Call 911 at any sign of a stroke!

BeFast StrokeMagnet


Joint Commission

Watauga Medical Center has earned The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval™  for certification as a Primary Stroke Center.Watauga Medical Center has earned The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval™ for certification as a Primary Stroke Center.

This certification demonstrates that we provide safe, high-quality care, treatment and services.