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South Yorkshire has been successful in securing funding along with seven other regions to pilot Stroke Video Triage. The pilot has been commissioned by NHSE and primarily involves Yorkshire Ambulance Service, Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield, and Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

Supported by the South Yorkshire Integrated Stroke Delivery Network (SY ISDN) the pilot will run for six months from mid-August 2022 and has the aim of improving stroke patient outcomes across the region.

The South Yorkshire Stroke Survivor and Carer Panel supported the funding bid from the SY ISDN. The Panel was developed to allow those who are living with stroke or caring for someone with stroke to share their views and help shape stroke services in the region.

Mandy Rylance, Stroke Survivor and Deputy Chair of the Panel, said: “I strongly believe that after having lived experience of a stroke, the contribution panel members can give to any future projects is significant. 

“The video triage trial means the correct assessment for a patient having a stroke can literally make a big difference to the patient’s future quality of life. What more could a patient want than a specialist stroke doctor being involved in the diagnosis from the minute you enter the ambulance. Exciting news for everyone.”

Those who are experiencing symptoms of a suspected stroke will have a video triage assessment with a stroke specialist at one of the Hyper Acute Stroke Units (HASU) across the region. An app, provided by GoodSAM, will support a video triage between the patient and the Stroke Team at either Doncaster Royal Infirmary Hospital or Royal Hallamshire Hospital.

The video call will help ensure that patients can be taken directly for treatment, increasing the speed in which the patient receives stroke intervention treatment and reducing handover times for staff on scene. It will also help in the identification of stroke mimics who may then be taken to the nearest Emergency Department.

Jono Milnes, Yorkshire Ambulance Service Area Clinical Lead, South, said: “This is a really exciting time and initiative, which allows our patients to receive specialist involvement from the very earliest opportunity, supporting our aim in becoming the best emergency and urgent care provider by 2023.”

Data will be gathered throughout the pilot period to help measure the impact of the video triage and gather learning.