From 19 December, County Durham and Darlington Foundation
Trust's hyper acute stroke service will be centralised at
University Hospital of North Durham (UHND).
Trust medical director Dr Robin Mitchell says: "This will
allow the Trust to make significant quality improvements in
services for patients.
"The change follows a public consultation on a single site for
hyper acute stroke within the Trust, and the subsequent decision by
our PCT commissioner NHS County Durham and Darlington on 1
"It means that, from 9am on 19 December, all patients in the
Trust's area who have stroke symptoms will be taken by ambulance to
"A contingency arrangement is in place that will allow for any
patients with stroke symptoms who attend Darlington Memorial
Hospital to be assessed and diagnosed via a telemedicine link, and
to be transferred once stabilised.
"Rehabilitation for stroke will continue at Bishop Auckland
The timetable for the implementation is as follows:
Dr Mitchell continues: "New monitoring equipment has been
purchased to support the implementation of a single site, and the
second CT scanner at UHND is being re-commissioned in order to
ensure round the clock access to diagnostic
"The Trust expects to make rapid improvements to its performance
against national quality standards following implementation,
"Progress will be subject to monthly review, prior to a full
implementation review in June. Review outcomes will be shared
with commissioners and scrutiny committees."
'As I was very, very nervous, I must have been the worst patient
ever and they were brilliant with me and I can't thank them enough
- could you please pass on my sincere thanks.'
Patient, Hysteroscopy Unit, Chester-le-Street Community