Newham Hospital increases assessments

There has been a huge increase in the number of hospital inpatients in Newham receiving fully documented assessments to see if they are at risk of developing blood clots.

The hospital has turned around its performance in the formal recording of patient risk assessments for Venous Thromboembolism or blood clots to 90 per cent of all inpatients. All are backed up by evidence.

In 2011, the hospital stepped up its work to improve the formal recording of such assessments, after 2010/11 figures showed that only 15 per cent of them were backed up by evidence against a national average of 68 per cent.

The formal recording of the risk assessment for VTE was made a top priority and the Newham University Hospital NHS Trust Board committed to delivering a minimum of 90 per cent of evidenced risk assessments during 2011/12.

The hospital has achieved this with a number measures including better training and education on recording the assessments correctly and entering them online. It has also run a campaign promoting the importance of online recording.

It has introduced an electronic patient recording system which has led to a dramatic increase in the number of assessments being logged. This led to the hospital being able to formally record that 90 per cent of patients were being risk assessed on the system.

Mike Gill, Medical Director, said: “We want patients to know that when they come to Newham they are receiving the best possible care. For us, providing safe, high quality care to our patients is our number one priority and improving recording by 75 per cent over the last year goes some way towards demonstrating our commitment to patient safety.”

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The assessments ensure that patients at risk from blood clots are given the right treatment at the right time. VTE is a common problem in the UK with approximately 25,000 deaths from hospital VTE each year.