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Progressive care unit team: Helping patients with stroke

By The Health News Team | February 23, 2023
Progressive care unit team at Sharp Grossmont Hospital

The 5-East PCU team is a multidisciplinary team that cares for patients who have experienced stroke.

Recovering from a stroke involves patience, determination and extraordinary care from a specialized health care team. For patients treated at Sharp Grossmont Hospital for stroke, the first stop after a procedure or initial stroke treatment is often the Progressive Care Unit (PCU), located on the 5-East floor of the hospital. It is in the 5-East PCU that a patient begins their journey toward recovery.

The team in the 5-East PCU is comprised of a multidisciplinary group of individuals whose job is to help patients rest and recover after experiencing stroke. The goal is to help them regain their mobility and other functioning.

“We are a team of neurologists, nurse practitioners, nurses, social workers, case managers, and physical, occupational and speech therapists — among others — that provide care to patients who have suffered or are suspected of having suffered an acute stroke or transient ischemic attack or mini-stroke,” says Mahta Yemane, a clinical nurse lead with Sharp Grossmont.

Each team member, she says, plays a vital role in helping a patient recover.

Working across departments to provide extraordinary care

“My role here on 5-East is to assist the nursing staff with the care of stroke patients with limited mobility by checking vital signs and helping them with activities of daily living — feeding, changing, bathing,” says Valerie Boswell, a health care assistant and certified nursing assistant with Sharp Grossmont. “We work as a team to always deliver the highest level of care to all of our patients.”

Yemane says the team also coordinates with other hospital departments to conduct diagnostic tests to assess modifiable risk factors for stroke. They then address them with medical or surgical interventions to reduce the risk of another stroke episode.

Each team member works toward the goal of helping a patient be well enough to continue their recovery at home or in an outpatient setting. The hope is that they can eventually return seamlessly back into daily life.

“We collaborate with several different disciplines to determine what's best for the patient,” says Yemane. “I see my job as an intellectual challenge that forces you to consider not just a patient’s medical history, but also their psychosocial situation, cultural and religious preferences, and socioeconomic situation. No two patients are the same.”

Providing The Sharp Experience

According to Yemane, during their hospital stay, patients are frequently assessed for neurological function to look for signs of improvement or deterioration. Through these assessments, along with recommendations from team members and honoring patient wishes, the care team determines the safest and most appropriate way to prepare the patient for discharge and follow-up care.

Boswell says every team member is passionate about the work they do to help restore the health of patients. Each recognizes, she says, that when they work well together, “the patient is helped even more.”

“Everyone on the 5-East unit cares and respects one another, making the community on the unit feel more like family,” Boswell says. “And I feel very proud to be a part of a team that provides The Sharp Experience for our patients.”

Learn how Sharp Grossmont Hospital is designated as a Comprehensive Stroke Center — the highest designation given by The Joint Commission in association with the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.


Mahta Yemane


Mahta Yemane is a clinical nurse lead with Sharp Grossmont Hospital.


Valerie Boswell


Valerie Boswell is a health care assistant and certified nursing assistant with Sharp Grossmont Hospital.

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