Better care urged for stroke patients

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SOUTH Yorkshire hospitals are being urged to treat strokes as a medical emergency at all times in order to improve patient care.

A project carried out by researchers from Sheffield University and Sheffield Teaching Hospitals investigated ways to improve care for stroke patients across the county. It highlighted the desperate need for strokes to be treated as a medical emergency, just like heart attacks, and for more comprehensive education to raise awareness about the warning signs.

Consultant Amanda Jones said: “If someone suspects that they have had a stroke it is vital that they get to hospital immediately.

“Early assessment can ensure those who are appropriate for clot-busting therapy receive it, and the sooner the treatment is given the better.

“Early treatment can make the difference between someone being disabled and dependent on others for basic everyday activities to being able to be completely independent.”

In total 59 stroke survivors, relatives and their carers, and 66 members of staff working on stroke units across South Yorkshire took part in extensive interviews and focus groups to determine the top priorities for improvement.