April 2018 - GIRFT Stakeholder News - Read online

Stakeholder News

National report on cardiothoracic surgery published

Smarter bed management and using designated specialist teams for key cardiothoracic surgery procedures will deliver better outcomes for thousands of patients suffering life-threatening or debilitating chest, heart, and lung conditions.

According to the GIRFT national report on cardiothoracic surgery, changing the way cardiothoracic surgical services are organised and delivered in England will bring substantial benefits for patients suffering from conditions such as blocked arteries, lung cancer and heart valve disease.

The report, written by Mr David Richens, GIRFT Clinical Lead for cardiothoracic surgery, is the fourth national report published by the GIRFT programme.

Click here to read the announcement and download the report >
Click here for details on the cardiothoracic surgery workstream >
The recommendations have been fully endorsed by the Royal College of Surgeons and the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery (SCTS).

“Patients undergoing cardiothoracic surgery are some of the most ill that the NHS cares for, suffering conditions such as heart valve disease, lung cancer and blocked arteries.

“Cardiothoracic surgeons have pioneered the collection and publication of clinical outcomes data and since monitoring and publishing survival rates for adult cardiac surgery, we have seen a progressive improvement in outcomes. Survival rates for patients having cardiothoracic surgery in the UK are now amongst the best in the world.

“With the far wider range of clinical and process measures that are now available as a result of the GIRFT report, cardiothoracic units can now benchmark performance against the national average, a powerful tool for continued improvements in services to patients.  As an example, the report suggests that more efficient bed management for cardiothoracic patients will help reduce delays, cancellations and long stays in hospital.

“SCTS and the RCS strongly support the report’s recommendation that certain conditions, such as aortovascular surgery for aorta rupture, and mitral valve surgery, must be treated by surgeons who are specialists in these areas. We also support GIRFT’s recommendation on the greater use of minimally invasive thoracic surgery for the treatment of early stage lung cancers.

“We now urge the NHS to act upon the recommendations made in this report.”

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