Bristol & Weston Hospitals Charity (formerly Above and Beyond) has been awarded £57,000 from NHS Charities Together to support its appeal to provide at-home monitoring service for BHI patients with pacemakers.
Thousands of BHI patients have a cardiac implantable electronic device (CIED) or pacemaker to help control or monitor irregular heartbeats. Having a CIED requires them to attend hospital as often as every six weeks to be checked.
However, COVID-19 restrictions have severely affected patients’ ability to attend their hospital appointments. The average age of a person with a CIED in the UK is 75 years old, which puts these patients in a high-risk group.
Over lockdown, the BHI identified technology that would allow CIED patients to be monitored remotely instead. By providing patients with home monitoring equipment that they place by their bed, staff could routinely assess patients and perform essential tests without the patient leaving their home.
Remote monitoring reduces mortality in these patients as it enables the CIED clinic to detect heart failure events at an early stage and intervene before the patient develops symptoms. This includes being able to detect Atrial Fibrillation, which is the leading cause of stroke in the UK.
Following a successful trial in a cohort of complex CIED patients, this year Bristol & Weston Hospitals Charity launched an appeal to provide remote monitoring technology for all CIED patients at the BHI. This will reduce both waiting times in the clinic and the number of hospital visits overall, while providing an even more effective level of service and care.
The NHS Charities Together award, announced in September, comes as part of a package of support for 10 different health projects that will benefit more than 100,000 people in Bristol and beyond, not only those with heart conditions. Find out more