Using technology and data to improve the diagnosis and treatment of strokes across Greater Manchester
What are we trying to do?
This project aims to improve quality of care across the stroke pathway, from suspected stroke onset through to long-term care, by linking and analysing routinely available datasets collected across different settings and services. This will help us to better understand the patient journey, identify opportunities for improvement, and design, implement and evaluate tests of change in a number of different areas identified for improvement. The project is funded by the Connected Health Cities Greater Manchester programme, part of the £20 government-funded Health North initiative, which aims to establish a ‘learning health system’ across Greater Manchester.
Why is it important?
A new stroke occurs approximately 152,000 times each year in the UK. The signs of stroke usually happen very suddenly with paramedics often making the first patient assessment. Those patients who are thought to have had a stroke should then be taken to a specialist stroke unit by ambulance where hospital-specialists will oversee their care until they are discharged into the care of community teams and their registered GP. Although some data are still recorded manually, each of these services electronically records key clinical information about the patient into separate and isolated systems and databases. These disjointed recording methods hinder important communication flows between clinicians which can weaken clinical decision making. They also present a challenge to obtaining a full overview of the patient’s journey through and in-between services, making it difficult to identify where and how improvements could be made across the stroke pathway.
Our aim is to link and analyse these discrete datasets to enable us to gain a comprehensive overview of patient care across the entirety of the stroke pathway. This will give an instructive insight to understand current practices, enabling us to identify where the gaps in care are, and allow for suggestions of where are how improvements to services can be implemented and studied.
How will we do it?
The work of the project will be broken down into four work streams corresponding to four parts of the stroke pathway. These four work streams are (for further information can be obtained using the links below):
- 1. Stroke mimics
Aim: To reduce the number of stroke mimics (also known as false positives) entering and progressing through the stroke pathway.
- 2. Stroke secondary prevention
Aim: Improve the quality of secondary prevention for stroke and TIA patients following discharge from the acute setting (with a particular focus on atrial fibrillation and blood pressure management).
- 3. Intracerebral haemorrhage
Aim: To reduce death and disability within patients presenting with intracerebral haemorrhage (ICH) in Greater Manchester.
- 4. Delayed hospital discharge post-stroke
Aim: To identify the factors associated with delayed discharge from inpatient hospital care for patients with a diagnosis of stroke.