Americans suffer some 800,000 strokes each year, 140,000 of them fatal. That’s nearly twice as many deaths as are caused by opioid overdoses and four times as many deaths as are caused by car crashes. Strokes are a serious threat to Americans, especially but not exclusively to the elderly. We are very happy to note the certification of a primary stroke treatment center at Stanford Health Care-ValleyCare medical center in Pleasanton, the first of its kind in the Livermore-Pleasanton area.

The location of the new center is much more than a matter of patient convenience. Speed is essential to the effective treatment of stroke, but only about one stroke victim in five reaches medical care fast enough to prevent or reduce serious complications. Until now, Livermore and Pleasanton stroke victims were transported out of the immediate area, often delaying treatment by a half hour or more.

Many deserve credit for creating the new center, starting with Stanford-ValleyCare medical staff and management and the ValleyCare Charitable Foundation. The Tri-Valley community has generously supported the Foundation’s fundraising. Stroke remains a deadly threat, but residents can breathe a little easier knowing that they have a primary stroke treatment center closer to home.