University of Leicester backs the standard of children’s cardiac surgery at Glenfield

Posted by er134 at Jul 08, 2016 05:21 PM |
Statement by the Head of the College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology, and the President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leicester

Issued by the University of Leicester Press Office on 8 July 2016

The Head of the College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology, and the President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leicester have issued a joint statement in support of the local authorities and clinicians working together to keep surgery for children born with heart defects at Leicester’s Glenfield Hospital.

The news that NHS England intended to decommission children’s cardiac surgery was shared with John Adler, the Chief Executive of Leicester’s Hospitals, by letter.

Mr Adler has since told local NHS staff that he believes the decision taken – which rests on the ability to meet revised national NHS standards established in the new congenital heart disease review – to be “wrong”.

Pointing to the series of actions identified as required for the unit to meet national standards, Mr Adler said:

“Over the last 18 months we have made excellent progress… We have expanded the number of beds, improved our outcomes, invested in staffing and briefed architects to create a new single site children’s hospital… We are confident that our clinical outcomes are now amongst the best in the country so we strongly disagree with NHS England’s decision.”

Cardiovascular research is a major strength of the University of Leicester, and clinical researchers work closely with the University Hospitals of Leicester (UHL) NHS Trust.

Head of College and Dean of Medicine Professor Philip Baker has confirmed the clinical strengths at the East Midlands Congenital Heart Centre, saying:

“Clinical outcomes at the East Midlands Congenital Heart Centre are amongst the best in the country. There are a handful of centres in England and Wales offering heart surgery to children with congenital heart disease, and Glenfield had been on track to meet the new national standards including the number of complex surgeries carried out by each surgeon.

“We shouldn’t underestimate the impact that decommissioning surgery will have on patients and their families across the East Midlands and wider Eastern region. Leicester receives young patients from as far afield as Norwich and Lincoln. If services are lost at Glenfield, those patients would have to travel as far as London, Birmingham or Leeds.”

University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Boyle comments:

“Leicester has a proud record of excellence in cardiovascular care. Our thoughts are with local NHS clinicians and researchers who want to see that tradition continue – as well as the patients who may be affected by the decommissioning of local services. John Adler has our full support, and we look forward to working with the local NHS trust to outline the clinical case for the East Midlands Congenital Heart Centre.”



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