Campaigner calls for lifesaving NHS services for cardiac arrest patients in Solihull - The Solihull Observer

Campaigner calls for lifesaving NHS services for cardiac arrest patients in Solihull

Solihull Editorial 24th May, 2019   0

A CAMPAIGNER has called for lifesaving NHS services to be made available to cardiac arrest patients in Solihull.

A notice was sent out by the University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) Trust last week to remind ambulance staff that Solihull Hospital ‘will no longer accept out-of-hospital cardiac arrests’.

This is because the hospital on Lode Lane does not have an A&E department or appropriate facilities to offer optimum treatment.

It said patients in the borough should always be taken to Heartlands Hospital in Bordesley Green, Birmingham, where survival chances are improved.

The trust says the change only affects an average of three patients a month.

But the notice has provoked an angry response from some who said the same level of service elsewhere should be available in the borough.

This includes Solihull resident Saira Hussein who recently had her life saved by a quick-thinking employee at Tudor Grange Leisure Centre, who administered a defibrillator without hesitation, as we reported.

Her heart had stopped for several minutes and her husband, Nasar Hussein, a pharmacist, says the lack of provision in the borough will almost certainly cost lives.

He said: “In Saira’s case she was taken to Heartlands and was lucky.

“However that hospital was massively overstretched and as a result they get them through the system in a hurry especially after surgery.

“Cardiac arrest is one of the most vital of emergencies and we need to make our voices heard at the highest levels in order to maintain a service for the Solihull area.

“My wife was lucky but I remember being in the ambulance wondering why we were driving past Solihull Hospital to a site another 15 minutes away and in much more traffic.

“The care in an ambulance is limited and the ‘golden time’ after a cardiac arrest will be affected.

“This will also put more strain on already stretched service at Heartlands.”

The trust says people still present themselves to Solihull Hospital in cardiac arrest, and ambulances still travel there by mistake.

A spokesperson from the trust said: “The trust and West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) agreed to introduce this appropriate pathway for patients over a year ago.

“It was prompted by analyses of mortality data which identified that there was a statistically significant variance in survival rates for patients taken directly to Solihull Hospital with a cardiac arrest as compared to Heartlands or Queen Elizabeth hospitals.

“Dialogue was undertaken with cardiology consultants, ED consultants, Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group and WMAS as to the impact of taking patients directly to Heartlands, where there is a more developed infrastructure to clinically manage patients presenting with an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

“The pathway is also in line with national advice. However, it was not being adhered to in every case and we welcome its reinforcement which will result in better outcomes for the patients involved.”

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