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University Hospitals Birmingham

Clinical Articles, Lead Article

Community cardiology service piloted

A ‘One Stop Community Cardiology Service’ is being offered at Haslucks Green Medical Centre in Shirley, Solihull, during a two-year pilot project run by University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.

The consultant-led service, headed by Dr Joseph De Bono and Dr Mauro Lencioni (Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham), provides on site electrocardiograms (ECG) and echocardiograms, helping to reduce hospital admissions.

Cardiac physiologists also attend the clinics at Haslucks Green Medical Centre to provide the immediate diagnostics tests along with the fitting of 24 hour blood pressure monitoring and 24 hour tape recording devices which measure a person’s heart rhythm over a complete day.

The pilot scheme was launched last September after receiving support from the Solihull Primary Care Trust Board to work in conjunction with Sirius (South Solihull GP consortium, part of Solihull Health Clinical Commissioning Group).

Dr Joseph De Bono

Dr Joseph De Bono

Under the Solihull project, patients from seven GP practices – Haslucks Green, Village Surgery, The Jacey Practice, Northbrook Group Practice, Tanworth Lane Surgery, Grafton Road and Park Surgery – are provided with a one-stop cardiology service in newly-built premises.

The community cardiology team aims to see all patients within two weeks, with a total of 99 patients having been referred to the new service by the end of December 2011. During this period, 95 ECG’s and 75 echocardiograms were carried out.

Dr Mauro Lencioni

Dr Mauro Lencioni

As well as the specialised cardiology service, the team is also looking to establish close working relationships with the pilot GP practices and offer a dedicated time for advice consultations. They also aim to provide training sessions as required at consortium or practice meetings.

Dr Lencioni said: “I enjoy going to the surgery as the environment is friendly and patients are so much happier when they see us in the community.  We have been able to reduce some patients’ waiting times by listing them directly from the surgery for curative procedures to treat their rhythm abnormalities”.

A Patient Satisfaction Survey has provided the team with positive comments on all aspects of the service with the overall impression of the service scoring as ‘excellent’.

Published on: March 9, 2012

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