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Stroke is a preventable disease. It is the fourth single leading cause of death in the UK, and the largest cause of complex disability.

Stroke rates have fallen by about 40% and deaths of stroke patients who receive hospital care have halved over the last 20 years. But without further action, due to a growing and ageing population, the number of people having a stroke will increase by almost half, and the number of stroke survivors living with a disability will increase by a third by 2035.

The NHS Long Term Plan sets out our ambition to prevent more than 150,000 heart attacks, stroke and dementia cases over the next 10 years, by identifying those at highest risk and helping them to manage their conditions.

We will aim to:

  • Reduce the risk factors for stroke. This will include actions to improve the populations lifestyle choices (diet, physical activity, weight, alcohol)
  • Develop our acute stroke offer and networking across the BCWB ICS moving towards an Integrated Stroke Delivery network (ISDN)
  • Explore how best to configure our hyper-acute stroke care in the context of workforce challenges to ensure all units are well-equipped and staffed and able to meet seven day standards for stroke care
  • Develop acute stroke interventions including brain scanning, thrombolysis, mechanical thrombectomy and other future national developments
  • Further develop our stroke rehabilitation to ensure out-of-hospital, integrated, high inensity rehabilitiation for people in recovery from stroke.

The system will deliver the national stroke programme, developed jointly by NHS England and the Stroke Association, which will deliver better prevention, treatment and care for the people within BCWB who have a stroke. The ambitions of the programme, which meet the aims set out in the Long Term Plan, will:

  • Improve post-hospital stroke rehabilitation models for stroke survivors
  • Deliver a ten-fold increase in the proportion of patients who receive a thrombectomy after stroke so that each year 1,600 more people will be independent after their stroke
  • Train more hospital consultants to offer mechanical thrombectomy
  • Deliver clot-busting thrombolysis to twice as many patients, ensuring 20% of stroke patients receive it by 2025 – the best performance in Europe
  • Enhance the Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme (SSNAP) to identify further need and drive improvements
  • Ensure three times as many patients receiving 6 month reviews of their recovery and needs – from 29% today to 90%.

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