Reducing Cardiac Arrests

The great strides that Scotland has made to reduce the number of deaths from Sepsis is now well documented – as is the impact of the Scottish Patient Safety Programme (SPSP) which recently celebrated its 10th year of driving improvements in patient safety. Less known, but no less important, is the growing progress we’re making in reducing cardiac arrests.

Thanks to the vigilance of staff, there’s been a big reduction in the number of cardiac arrests in Scotland’s acute hospitals.   Since 2013, a 27 per cent drop has been recorded in 16 hospitals, including Forth Valley Royal Hospital, which have reported local data to the Scottish Patient Safety Programme. This means that on average, there are 22 fewer people per month suffering from this harmful and distressing experience in hospitals.

Key actions contributing to this improvement include implementation of the National Early Warning Score (NEWS), improving the response to a deteriorating patient and more timely treatment for patients with Sepsis.

The Scottish Patient Safety Programme has also developed educational cards and posters to support clinical staff alongside an online module to increase awareness and understanding of NEWS.

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