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Published on 27 January 2010

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NICE recommends all patients admitted to hospital are risk assessed for VTE

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Publication of today’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s (NICE) updated Clinical Practice Guideline for prevention of Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) recommends that, for the first time, all patients admitted to hospital are risk assessed for VTE and appropriate measures taken.

To assist with the practical implementation of VTE risk assessment and prevention Bayer Schering Pharma (BSP) launches a thromboprophylaxis toolkit.

VTE remains one of the most common causes of preventable in-hospital deaths, killing up to 32,000 people every year- four times more people than MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and C.difficile combined.

It is hoped that with the combination of the new NICE guideline and BSP’s Preventing Venous Thromboembolism in Hospital Toolkit that the number of avoidable deaths can be reduced.

Eve Knight, Chief Executive of the Charity AntiCoagulation Europe (ACE), said: “In recent years the majority of healthcare professionals have acknowledged the need to make prevention of VTE a priority. Recently, the All-Party Parliamentary Thrombosis Group’s audit revealed 100% awareness of the Chief Medical Officer and NICE recommendations on the prevention of VTE. Yet the difficult step of taking action has not necessarily followed, as the same audit revealed that less than a quarter of Trusts routinely reassess patients for their risk of VTE and that the number of Trusts able to provide audit data on the ward-level implementation of VTE protocols continues to be worryingly low.  We warmly welcome the launch of this toolkit which offers practical solutions to the wide-ranging challenges associated with the effective local implementation and management of VTE thromboprophylaxis.”

Publication of new NICE guidelines follow a recent Department of Health initiative that will further encourage hospitals to implement risk assessment and prevention of hospital-acquired VTE by offering financial incentives for compliance. This initiative will operate through the CQUIN (Commissioning for Quality and Innovation) payment framework.

Dr Roopen Arya, Consultant Haematologist at King’s College Hospital, said: “We were delighted to be involved in the development of this toolkit which will help support other hospitals in their bid to prevent VTE. We strongly urge all providers of VTE thromboprophylaxis and commissioners of healthcare to make use of the available resources to aid implementation of effective systems to prevent VTE in hospitals, and ultimately reduce the leading cause of preventable deaths in our hospitals.”



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