Stepping Hill hospital leads the way in blood clot prevention
Over 12,000 deaths per year in the UK are attributable to VTE. Thankfully, they are treatable if discovered early.
Stepping Hill Hospital has been selected as an example site for others to follow due to its success in preventing blood clots.
Following assessment and inspection by a team from King’s College, London, it has been named as an NHS ‘Exemplar site’ in the prevention and care of Venous Thromboembolism (VTE), which is a type of blood clot.
It joins other VTE exemplar centres across the country as part a network of hospitals with an existing track record of excellence in VTE prevention and care. Run by King’s College, the network offers practical support and advice to other centres by sharing their resources, and collaboration on clinical research into VTE prevention.
VTE clots begin in deep veins and travel to various parts of the body, including but not limited to arms, legs, the lungs and heart. They estimated to affect around 2 in every 1000 people in the UK. They can happen to anybody and can cause serious illness, disability, and in some cases, death. Over 12,000 deaths per year in the UK are attributable to VTE. Thankfully, they are treatable if discovered early.
Stockport NHS Foundation Trust has a specialist nursing led VTE clinic at Stepping Hill Hospital which is skilled in counselling patients on their diagnosis, formulating and prescribing the correct treatment for their condition and ongoing management.
The hospital’s thrombosis team were recognised in their assessment for keeping a robust data set of signs of VTE. Part of its electronic prescribing (ePMA) system means a VTE risk assessment is required before any medications being prescribed before this has been completed. Since this was put in place patient safety improved dramatically and has meant that since April 2013 the trust has successfully achieved the 95% national target for VTE risk assessment compliance.
The team at Kings College were equally impressed with the work of the hospital’s thrombosis committee and its completion of VTE root cause analysis (RCA) for patients within 90 days of discharge who re-attend hospital with a VTE episode. This system ensures that events can be highlighted, learnt from and avoided.
Andrew Loughney, Medical Director for Stockport NHS Foundation Trust said
“VTEs cause a large number of deaths in the UK each year so preventing them in high risk patients is vitally important. Equally, if someone does develop a VTE, detecting it early and treating it effectively is crucial. We are therefore delighted that our thrombosis team has received this national recognition for its efforts. Our promises are firstly to continue with our hard clinical work and secondly to contribute in full to the UK’s world leading VTE research endeavours.”