Stroke Care

Advanced Certification for Comprehensive Stroke Centers

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To find out more about neuroscience care and treatment at the Cottage Health's Neuroscience Institute (SBNI), or to request an appointment, please call our neuroscience care center at 1-844-282-7246.

If you or a loved one suffers a stroke, it’s crucial to get to the right hospital immediately. With stroke, time lost is brain lost, and every minute is crucial for the best outcome.

Advanced Certification for Comprehensive Stroke Centers

Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification for Comprehensive Stroke Centers.

The Gold Seal of Approval® and the Heart-Check mark represent symbols of quality, and with this certification Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital joins an elite group of health care organizations focused on highly-specialized stroke care.

To be eligible, hospitals must demonstrate compliance with stroke-related standards as a Primary Stroke Center and meet additional requirements, including those related to advanced imaging, availability of specialized treatments at all times, and staff education and competencies to care for complex stroke patients.

Cottage Health has achieved excellence in these Joint Commission requirements:

  • Compliance with national standards for stroke care
  • Effective use of primary stroke center recommendations and clinical practice guidelines to manage and optimize stroke care
  • Evaluate ways to improve performance and clinical practice, thereby improving patient care and outcomes

Comprehensive Stroke Program

Cottage Health stroke program provides the following key features which are typically offered only in large academic medical centers:

  • Comprehensive multi-disciplinary team approach to care
  • Neuroendovascular surgeon
  • Critical care neuro-intensivist
  • Stroke interventions such as clot retrieval and intra-arterial thrombolytic therapy
  • Resource for emotional support for families
  • Community education on stroke prevention


Patient Testimonial: Kathy Oehler

Kathy Oehler - Cottage Health Neuroscience

Kathy Oehler and her husband Richard Strasburg had just returned to their home in Morro Bay one evening after going out. Later that evening, Richard found Kathy in a catatonic state, unable to talk, with a stunned look on her face. She was taken to a local hospital and then helicoptered to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. Tests showed Kathy suffered a severe brain hemorrhage from an aneurysm.

The neuroscience team at Cottage performed surgery and placed her into an induced coma to help her swollen brain heal. Kathy spent 30 days at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital and then another three weeks at Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital. Today, Kathy is doing well and enjoying life with her husband in Morro Bay.


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Jessica's Return to Dance

Cottage Health Neuroscience Institute - Video GalleryWatch videos from patients, doctors and surgeons to learn more about the Cottage Health - Santa Barbara Neuroscience Institute