The exemplary work of staff at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH), King’s Lynn has resulted in stroke patients receiving treatment in nearly half the national guideline time.
Specialised staff at The QEH are able to administer potentially life-altering drugs in 39 minutes after the initial assessment compared to national guidelines of 60 minutes.
The high-performing unit has also ranked fifth out of 14 regional hospitals in the Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme results, which measure the processes of care provided to stroke patients.
A dedicated specialist stroke nursing team provides 24 hour-a-day cover, while there is also an on-call stroke consultant for 24 hours-a-day available via telemedicine out of hours.
Further support is provided by a community rehabilitation team which visits patients after they have been released from hospital, while a specialist therapy team covers six days a week to ensure patients are assessed within a 12 hour period, which includes assessing patients on A&E or other wards once bleeped by a stroke specialist nurse.
The stroke unit is a multi-disciplinary team that is not just dedicated to the patients inpatient stay, but at prevention, aftercare and the long term effects. The team has a stroke prevention clinic, a rehabilitation gym, a spasticity clinic for ongoing tone management needs.
During 2018, the team has received 2,182 stroke referrals and is currently taking part in innovative projects for new medications, such as an alternative treatment for thrombolysis.
Future initiatives include virtual triage, whereby the thrombolysis nurse will be able to carry out assessments via video link over the phone and determine what treatment the patient needed and what team would need to assess the patient if they were coming to the hospital.
Stroke Sister Esther Butler said: “We are delighted with the results we have been getting, which are a reflection of the hard work of everyone in the team.
“We also have a lot of exciting projects ahead, including the cutting edge virtual triage to enable assessments to be carried out over the phone.
“We are a diverse specialist team of nursing staff, therapy staff and Dr’s. We are proud of all the services we offer and we are excited to set up the new Stroke Services webpage for Stroke education and stroke specific competencies.”
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