Joint Commission Primary Stroke Center Certification Does Not Affect Proband Enrollment: The Siblings With Ischemic Stroke Study

Alexa N. Richie, Jorge Trejo, Christian G. Bowers, Rebecca B. McNeil, Dale M. Gamble, Sothear H. Luke, Robert D. Brown, Thomas G. Brott, Brett M. Kissela, Bradford B. Worrall, James F. Meschia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: The Joint Commission (JC) certifies primary stroke centers in the United States. Whether certification promotes enrollment of study subjects into stroke research studies is not known. We examined whether enrollment performance of centers was related to JC certification status. Methods: The 51 US Siblings with Ischemic Stroke Study (SWISS) centers were characterized by JC certification status, year of certification, year initiated into SWISS, center location, and whether the center had a vascular/stroke neurology fellowship program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. Performance measures included days elapsed from initiation to first enrollment, total enrollments within 12 months after initiation, and annual rate of enrollment thereafter. Results: In all, 36 of 51 SWISS sites (71%) were JC certified. A total of 32 (63%) were initiated into the study from 2000 through 2002, and 19 (37%) were initiated from 2005 through May 2008. Comparison of certified and noncertified sites showed no significant difference in the time to first enrollment (median, 77.5 v 115 days; P = .90), total enrollees in the first year (median, 3 v 2 probands; P = .69), or annual enrollment rate (median, 1.9 v 1.8 probands; P = .72). The rate of enrollment or time to first enrollment was not different between 2000-to-2002 and 2005-to-2008 sites. Early-initiated centers tended to have better year-1 enrollment than later-initiated centers (3 v 2 probands; P = .056). Conclusions: JC certification did not have a significant effect on SWISS center enrollment. The JC should encourage the research mission among certified stroke centers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-366
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2009


  • Brain ischemia
  • multicenter studies
  • observational studies
  • siblings
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Rehabilitation
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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