Acute Stroke Program of Interventions: Racial &Ethnic Disparities(ASPIRE)

Project: Research project

Grant Details


Stroke, the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of adult disability in the United States, has a
disproportionate impact on underserved populations that is reflected in higher incidence and mortality rates
in these groups. Several studies have suggested that blacks are less likely than whites to receive
intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (IV tPA), the only FDA-approved acute ischemic stroke therapy.
Efforts are needed to elucidate factors contributing to racial/ethnic disparities in access to acute stroke care
and to develop programs to overcome these barriers. The specific aims of this intervention project are: A) to
identify previously unrecognized sociocultural and environmental barriers to acute stroke treatment in an
underserved, urban population; B) to investigate whether implementation of a multilevel intervention
designed to address these barriers can significantly increase the number of ischemic stroke patients
appropriately treated with intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (IV tPA); and C) to perform program
evaluation of the methods used in the intervention to determine which efforts are the most effective. The
investigators will assist each of 6 hospitals in the District of Columbia to develop a team of Stroke
Champions to implement educational programs and standardized procedures designed to improve acute
stroke care. Five Baltimore hospitals will serve as the control group. Essential design features of this project
include: 1) a focus on underserved populations to identify community-specific barriers and then tailor existing
stroke education materials to increase health literacy and decrease delays in seeking treatment; 2)
implementation of interventions to address educational, attitudinal, and structural barriers at the public,
paramedic and hospital levels; and 3) assignment of a dedicated research coordinator to each hospital who
will also serve as a Stroke Champion. The long term objective of the trial is to identify systematic,
reproducible, effective methods for improving the delivery of acute stroke therapies in underserved areas
that can be implemented in a broader arena. The only way to definitively affect outcomes for underserved
stroke patients is to elucidate the complex issues related to access to treatment, and the District of Columbia
is the ideal city in which to perform these investigations.
Effective start/end date7/1/078/31/13


  • National Institutes of Health: $242,939.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $1,998,128.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $2,011,840.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $2,001,879.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $2,135,011.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $2,004,423.00


  • Medicine(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.