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Stroke Improvement Programme

The Stroke Improvement Programme was approved in March 2021 and has been provided over £3 million to improve and build on stroke services in the North Wales.

The funding will support the plan’s four main objectives:

  • To improve stroke prevention and early intervention
  • Establish Stroke specialist inpatient community rehabilitation units
  • Implement an Early Supported Discharge (ESD) service
  • Strengthen existing acute services

The programme will develop modern stroke services that meets National Clinical Guidelines for Stroke and the National Institute for Care Excellence (NICE) guidance on Atrial Fibrillation (AF).

In 2017, we commissioned a review of the Stroke Pathway by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP). That review identified recommendations and highlighted opportunities for improvement both in relation to the Acute phase, particularly in thrombolysis rates, and in terms of therapeutic support for patients.

The first 72 hours after having a stroke requires prompt assessment, diagnosis and commencement of treatment provided by expert staff.

The Stroke plan addresses several important strands including:

  • Health improvement for the population of North Wales
  • High quality Integrated Rehabilitation services
  • Excellent hospital care
  • Care closer to home through the Early Supported Discharge (ESD)
Stroke Prevention

A new stroke prevention model will be implemented, which is centred on improving atrial fibrillation (AF) detection, an abnormal heart rhythm in patients, and robust monitoring of people with the condition.

Stroke Rehabilitation Centres

The Stroke Improvement Programme will open three new rehabilitation centres across North Wales for patients who no longer need specialist medical care in acute hospitals, but still require stroke rehabilitation that cannot be delivered at home.

Early Supported Discharge (ESD)

The Stoke Improvement Programme will introduce an Early Supported Discharge service, the first in North Wales, which will help patients recover at home, rather than in hospital or a clinical setting.

Out of Hours

The Stroke Improvement Programme aims to improve the out of hours service for Stroke patients, including the time it takes for patients to have a CT scan, receive thrombolysis treatment and access specialist stroke bed and staff.