‘Impressive’ improvement to stroke care at Worthing Hospital


Stroke care for patients at Worthing Hospital has seen an ‘impressive’ improvement – following a recent audit.

Worthing Hospital has been rated as the seventh best hospital in the country for stroke care in the latest Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme (SSNAP) results.

As clinical director for the stroke service, I am immensely proud of the teams who have worked together,

Dr David Hunt

The hospital, run by Western Sussex NHS Foundation Trust, was given a B rating with a score of 78 out of a possible 100 – three points off the top A rating achieved by only two trusts in the country.

St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester, gained a C rating and has been ranked as the 35 best centre out of the 157 trusts included in the audit.

A spokesman for Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “The impressive achievement follows months of hard work and attention to detail to improve our systems and processes in relation to stroke, all aimed at improving patient care, outcomes and experience.

“Both scores are doubly impressive as it is not long ago that neither hospital featured in the top 100.”

Elderly care consultant Dr David Hunt, said: “As clinical director for the stroke service, I am immensely proud of the teams who have worked together, continually improving the care of our stroke patients.

“Their hard work and commitment to patient care is clearly demonstrated by these recent results.

“This means that patients are seen, assessed and treatment started faster and more comprehensively, which results in better care.”

The SSNAP data provides information about the treatment people receive when they have a stroke in a bid to improve treatment.

St Richard’s Hospital was criticised last year after data recorded in 2013 showed patients were not getting the quality of stroke care experienced by other hospitals in West Sussex.

Speaking at a West Sussex health and adult social care select committee meeting in March, 2014, member Dr James Walsh said: “The only conclusion if I were a patient looking at these is I would not want to go to St Richard’s for stroke treatment.

“I would say to my ambulance please take me somewhere other than St Richard’s unless the figures are very much better now.”

At the trust’s general meeting in July, chief executive Marianne Griffiths praised the hospitals for improvements in stroke care.

She said she was ‘delighted’ the trust had improved stroke services after recognising scans were not being done fast enough.

Stroke care is now part of the trust’s Quality Strategy – which focuses on areas the hospital can improve for patients, visitors and staff.

A spokesman for the trust added: “Our stroke clinicians and experts are working closely with the Sussex Collaborative, which represents commissioners in the area, to determine the future configuration of stroke care centres of excellence in the county.”

Every year, more than 900 people in West Sussex are admitted to Western Sussex Hospitals with a stroke.

A review is under way designed to make sure quality standards set out by health watchdog National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) are met across the board.

A spokesman for Western Sussex Hospitals said the trust would be working with Clinical Commissioning Groups, which commission healthcare services, continue the trust’s ‘excellent progress’ and ‘exceed’ NICE quality standards for patients.

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