Who will be involved in my care
After a stroke, you will need access to a range of health professionals, depending on the impact your stroke has had on you. In hospital, this is known as the stroke team or treating team. After discharge home, they may provide or arrange centre-based or visiting services.
Your general practitioner (GP) will manage your care once you get home. Your GP can also refer you to health professionals as needed.
Stroke care coordinator or discharge co-ordinator –your hospital care and help plan your discharge.
Doctors – the consultant is in charge of your hospital care. They may be a neurologist, rehabilitation physician or geriatrician. Registrars and residents report to the consultant.
Nurses – provide care while you are in hospital, taking and monitoring observations, administering medication and assisting with everyday activities.
Occupational therapist (OT) – work to get people back to day to day tasks, such as dressing and showering. They can help with thinking and memory problems, and with hand and arm problems. OTs also can help with return to work and driving.
Physiotherapist – work to improve the way you sit, stand, walk and exercise and to prevent falls. They can give you advice about mobility aids such as walking frames and wheelchairs.
Speech pathologist – assess to see if you can swallow and make recommendations to help you eat and drink safely. They also help if you have trouble speaking or understanding.
Dietician – help with getting enough nutrition because of swallowing difficulties or poor appetite. They can also give advice about diet to reduce your risk of another stroke.
Social worker – help with the emotional, social and financial impact of stroke. They can offer counselling, support, advice and information about discharge options and community services.
Psychologist – help with getting used to life after stroke, and with depression and anxiety.
Neuropsychologist – may work with you if you are having trouble with memory, thinking or behavioural problems. They can help develop practical strategies to help with these problems after stroke.
In hospital, this is known as the stroke team.
Once you go home
After you go home, the stroke team may arrange for people to visit you.
They may also arrange for you to go to appointments.
When you leave hospital, your general practitioner (GP) will take over from the stroke team.
Your GP will arrange for you to see health professionals.
Types of health professionals
Stroke care coordinator or discharge coordinator
This person plans your care in hospital.
They will also plan for you to go home.
There are many different kinds of doctors at the hospital.
The consultant is in charge of your medical care.
Registrars and residents report to the consultant.
Nurses look after you while you are in hospital.
Occupational therapists (OTs) help you get back to doing things for yourself.
This includes getting dressed and showering.
OTs help with thinking and memory problems.
They also help with hand and arm problems.
OTs can help you get back to work and drive a car again.
The physio helps you sit, stand, walk and exercise.
They also help to prevent falls.
They can tell you about using things like walking frames and wheelchairs.
The speech pathologist helps if you have trouble speaking or understanding.
They can also help you swallow, and eat and drink safely.
The dietitian will help with food.
They can also talk to you about foods that reduce your risk of another stroke.
The social worker links you with community services.
They can also help with the emotional impact of stroke.
The psychologist can help you get used to life after stroke.
They can also help with depression and anxiety.
The neuropsychologist can help with memory, thinking or behaviour.
They can give you ways to deal with these problems after stroke.