Fairfield General and Greater Manchester hospital stroke services now best in England

Khalil Kawafi
Fairfield General and Greater Manchester hospital stroke services now best in England
13 June 2017

The Greater Manchester Stroke Operational Delivery Network have had their improvements recognised nationally with three of Greater Manchester’s units including the specialist Primary Stroke Unit at Fairfield General Hospital in Bury, now placed in the top 10 in England.

Greater Manchester now has the best scoring hospital stroke pathway in the country with all stroke patients having access to care rated as ‘A’ (the highest available rating) by The Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme (SSNAP). This reflects the transformation stroke services have undergone in Greater Manchester in the last two years ensuring patients have access to better quality hospital care and timely specialist treatment.

SSNAP rates stroke services and rated Fairfield General Hospital’s Stroke Unit, one of three specialist stroke units in Greater Manchester, as the best in England out of 228 units nationally. It was closely followed by Salford Royal, also a specialist stroke unit, in second place and Trafford General’s stroke unit fourth.

In Greater Manchester around 6,000 people have a stroke each year and strokes are one of the main causes of disability. The longer a stroke goes untreated the more long term damage is caused to the brain so rapid access to high quality specialist services is essential for survival and recovery.  

Changes to stroke services have improved patient flow throughout the emergency process, ensured clot-busting treatments are available and grouped hyperacute services – including urgent assessments, brain scanning and specialist stroke staff - at three specialist stroke units. This mean more patients receive clot busting treatments within the optimum time window  and the majority of stroke patients are now treated on a specialist ward receiving expert stroke care, improving their chance of survival and recovery.

The new integrated network is also leading improvements in community rehabilitation as well as stroke prevention initiatives to reduce the number of strokes within the region.

Network Co-Clinical Lead, Dr Jane Molloy said:

“The excellent ratings now being achieved in Greater Manchester are the result of hard work by our local clinical teams, whose efforts have successfully implemented better stroke care leading to better outcomes for our patients.”

“With 80% of strokes preventable the Greater Manchester Stroke Operational Delivery Network will now work to reduce the number of people that have a stroke through health education and lifestyle changes.”

Dr Khalil  Kawafi, Director of Stroke services at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust and stroke lead for the strategic network and senate across GM, said:

"Since we launched the seven day hyper acute service across GM two years ago we have seen a sustained improvement in the care our stroke patients receive according to the Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme (SSNAP) and now I am proud to say that all stroke services in GM are scoring an A with Fairfield General Hospital and Salford Royal rated first and second best across the UK respectively. This achievement  is a testimony to the hard work dedication and collaborative working of the stroke community in GM  under the stewardship of the stroke clinical network and the stroke ODN."

Strokes are the fourth biggest killer in the UK, and one of the main causes of disability – but they can be treated. You can find out more about the Greater Manchester Stroke Operational Delivery Network at www.gmsodn.org.uk

Pictured: Dr Khalil  Kawafi, Director of Stroke services at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust and stroke lead for the strategic network and senate across GM

Notes for editors

  • The three hyperacute specialist stroke units are at Salford Royal, Fairfield General and Stepping Hill Hospitals.
  • A stroke is an attack within the brain, which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain.
  • Follow Greater Manchester Stroke Operation Delivery Network on Twitter @GMStrokeODN

Stroke Association is a charity that believes in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. Its works directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. It campaigns to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can and funds research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at www.stroke.org.uk