Venous thromboembolism risk assessments in acute care
Liz Lees Consultant nurse (acute medicine), Venous thromboembolism risk assessments, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, Birmingham
Maria McAuliffe Project nurse, venous thromboembolism risk assessments, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, Birmingham
This article is aimed at nurses and other health professionals working in clinical practice and involved in venous thromboembolism (VTE) risk assessments. The article adds to the body of published literature relating to patient risk assessment for VTE by exploring practical clinical perspectives of introducing a sustainable risk assessment process. It reports on a series of small scale changes carried out during a project in an acute medicine unit at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust in Birmingham, which aimed to improve the level of compliance with carrying out VTE risk assessments and administering prophylaxis. The results of two audits conducted over a seven-month period at the beginning and end of the project illustrate an improvement in compliance from 6.25% to 62.5%. The article concludes that leadership from medical consultants acting as clinical champions is imperative and that nurses and healthcare assistants also have a pivotal role in promoting patient assessments, and in maintaining the momentum and sustainability of VTE risk assessments in clinical areas.
Nursing Standard. 24, 22, 35-41. doi: 10.7748/ns2010.02.24.22.35.c7517Correspondence
This article has been subject to double blind peer review