31/03/2011

NHS 'Leading In Blood Clots Prevention'

The NHS is leading the way with its system of monitoring patients’ risk of forming blood clots while in hospital and ensuring appropriate prevention measures, Health Minister Lord Howe has said.

Speaking at a meeting hosted by the All-Party Parliamentary Thrombosis Group, the Clinical Leadership Summit on blood clots (venous thromboembolism), the minister spoke out about the need to prevent needless death and disability for patients in the NHS.

Every year, an estimated 25,000 people in England die from these clots in hospital. The blood clots form in the veins deep in the leg, usually in the calf and the majority of deaths in hospital are caused by part of the clot 'breaking off', travelling around the body and eventually lodging in the lungs, where it can cause a pulmonary embolism. The condition is largely preventable - requiring a simple risk assessment to be carried out by NHS staff followed by appropriate prevention in line with NICE guidance.

Speaking at the Summit, Lord Howe said: "It is within our gift to do something about these clots, to reduce the suffering of thousands of people and to save a great many lives. The NHS has made a tremendous start in improving this, and those making the biggest difference are those on the front-line - the junior doctors, nurses, pharmacists and GPs - who can work together to prevent needless suffering of patients.

"Their progress is a reflection of what we want to achieve across the NHS - clinical leadership and transparency.

"The aim of the system is to see that every patient admitted to hospital has had a risk assessment and appropriate prevention. While the NHS still has some work to do to achieve this, the initial results are impressive - the numbers of hospitals achieving the target of 90 per cent of patients assessed virtually trebled between July and December, from 18 to 53.

"The NHS in England is the only health system in the world to implement such a comprehensive system at a national level."

(BMcN)

Related UK National News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

26 March 2007
'Postcode lottery' remains in NHS dental care
There are "huge regional variations" in NHS dental care in England, consumer organisation Which? has warned in new research. The survey of 466 dentistry practices - which comes a year after the start of new NHS dentists' contract in England - found that just over a third (36%) are taking on any new NHS patients.
24 March 2011
Patients Getting Improved NHS Care
A round-up of NHS quality and financial performance between October and December 2010 has been published by the Department of Health today.
05 November 2013
CQC Raise Serious Concerns About Essex Hospital Trust
The Chief Inspector of Hospitals has recommended Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust should be placed into special measures. Professor Sir Mike Richards' call follows serious concerns, highlighted during a Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection, regarding the quality of some services for cancer patients at the trust.
04 January 2005
Five further health trusts make foundation grade
Following approval by the independent regulatory body, five Trusts have been granted Foundation Trust status.
23 September 2004
NHS recruitment drive to focus on over 50s
A new nationwide drive to recruit NHS staff, which will focus for the first time on the over 50s, has been was launched today. NHS Job Shop Day comprises of 220 events taking place around the country on or around 23 September. Around 150 Jobcentres across England will also be holding special NHS events on 23 September as part of NHS Job Shop Day.