Blood clot care 'patchy'27th June 2012
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has warned that hospitals are diagnosing and treating blood clots too slowly.
NICE said the speed of treatment needed to be improved and that hospitals in England and Wales should test patients "within 24 hours of identifying symptoms".
The health watchdog said the standard of care for blood clots - known as Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) - varied around the country.
While hospitals must assess patients to evaluate their danger of developing VTE, NICE wants them to provide an ultrasound scan and blood tests within 24 hours of a patient showing symptoms of the condition.
Ideally, it wants hospitals to do the tests for VTE within four hours.
The thrombosis charity Lifeblood helped NICE in its development of the new guidelines.
The charity's Medical Director, Beverley Hunt said: "This is a major advance in improving the quality of care patients receive. It sets a clear standard of care."
Professor Gerard Stansby, chairman of the guideline development group, said: "The NHS should be offering a seven-day-a-week service."
"It's not acceptable any more for people to have to wait over the weekend to get these tests in hospital."
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Title: Blood clot care 'patchy'
Author: Jess Laurence
Article Id: 22223
Date Added: 27th Jun 2012