Act FAST’ When Stroke Occurs. are Stroke Patients Listening to This Advice?

  • L. Mellon
  • D. Williams
  • F. Doyle
  • A. Hickey


Increased population knowledge of stroke warning signs has been reported in Ireland following widespread advertisement of the stroke awareness message ‘Act FAST’. This study aimed to examine the change in incidence of pre-hospital delay in an acute ischaemic stroke population and to examine if the Act FAST message influenced individual behaviour when stroke occurred. The incidence rate of pre-hospital delay was examined by assessing delayed stroke presentations in 2010/2011 and 2012/2013 to two Dublin hospitals. A cross-sectional prospective design was employed to examine behaviour during stroke onset. The primary outcome was pre-hospital delay, as defined by Onset-to-Door time (OTD) greater than 3.5 hours The incidence rate of pre-hospital delay significantly reduced from 2010/2011 to 2012/2013. Adjusted Cox regression modelling indicated shorter OTD time if the patients decision-making during symptom onset was affected by prior exposure to the FAST campaign (OR=1.8, 95% CI 1.01-3.24). Pre-hospital delay evidenced a significant reduction since the introduction of FAST. There was evidence that demonstrated population knowledge increases successfully affected behavioural response.
Oral presentations