Be stroke smart
Stroke has devastating consequences but it can be prevented.
The annual National Stroke Awareness campaign aims to educate the public on how to STOP stroke and SPOT stroke. This October, Stroke Services Improvement (SSI), supported by the Ministry of Health (MOH), has launched “Be Stroke Smart, Be Ok: Spot Stroke. Stop Stroke” – an extension of the 2019 campaign.
SSI will be reaching out to the public in community areas such as at HDB lift lobbies and mail drops to homes, as well as through a larger social media focus on stroke prevention and detection. The outreach will be done with the required safe management measures. From an initiative to educate young children through an action hero storybook to an e-getai event for seniors, a series of initiatives, targeting all age groups, have been put in place to raise awareness that stroke affects one in four adults and that 80 percent of strokes are preventable.
Based on the Singapore Stroke Registry Report 2018, there were about 8,300 stroke cases admitted to Singapore public hospitals, a five percent increase from about 7,900 cases in 2017. “Stroke affects one in four adults and can have devastating consequences. But the good news is 80 percent of strokes can be prevented. If we spot stroke early and seek emergency treatment fast, outcomes have been proven to be improved with reduced complications. The important message remains that one should seek urgent treatment when any one sign of stroke is spotted, regardless of severity. So, stroke education must not stop. There is much more we need to do, and we have planned a series of virtual initiatives that allow us to reach out everyone from children to seniors,” said A/Prof Deidre Anne De Silva, SSI chair and senior consultant neurologist at the National Neuroscience Institute.
With a stronger digital focus this year, a greater spectrum of content has been developed to educate about stroke prevention, awareness and detection. The #SpotStrokeFast challenge is a series of three illustrations of iconic locations in Singapore featuring the SpotStroke icons and some people suffering from stroke. The public is challenged to spot people experiencing a stroke, comment on Facebook how long they took to spot the characters and tag their friends to share and educate others on how to spot stroke symptoms.
Seniors have grown familiar with digital content as getai performers took to the virtual stage over the past few months. To educate the elderly on stroke, SSI will organise an e-getai stage centred on the theme of “Be Stroke Smart” on November 5, 2020. Featuring popular getai artists and hosted by Lin Ru Ping, bite-sized information such as the F.A.S.T. acronym (Face, Arms, Speech, Time) used to identify the common symptoms of stroke will be conveyed in an entertaining manner to viewers. The getai performances will be livestreamed on the Spot Stroke Facebook page (www.facebook.com/spotstroke/) and LEX-S Watch Live Channel’s platform (www.facebook.com/lexswatchlivechannel/).
Stroke education is also extended to children, who can help spread the message to the rest of the family especially their grandparents whom they may spend a substantial amount of time with. The collaboration between Singapore National Stroke Association (SNSA) and an industry partner will see the launch of the F.A.S.T. Heroes storybook adapted for young local readers.
To find out more about the campaign, visit the Spot Stroke Facebook page at www.facebook.com/spotstroke/.