News in brief: New tech deployed for cancer patients in Oldham and cardiology centre revealed in Newcastle Upon Tyne

This week so far we brought you the news of a new Chief Exec for North Middlesex, a new digital strategy launched by the Department for Education, Wye Valley opened a new model of care, and researchers have called for investment and improvement in miscarriage care. But there’s lots more in the news too! Here we round-up some interesting stories from across health and care.

LIMB-Art launches at Morriston Hospital

LIMB-Art, a Welsh-based prosthetic leg cover provider has joined forces with Swansea Artificial Limb and Appliance Centre at Morriston Hospital in South Wales. The centre cares for NHS patients, Armed Forces Veterans, and child amputees.  

Peter McCarthy, Specialist Prosthetist at Swansea Artificial Limb and Appliance Centre, said: “LIMB-art’s eye-catching covers provide our patients with an enhanced sense of identity that promotes or enables the amputee to feel self-confident and to be themselves rather than trying to disguise the fact they have a limb missing.”

March sees dementia become leading cause of death

Urgent action is required say Alzheimer’s Research UK, after dementia became the leading cause of death in March 2021.

Data from the office of National Statistics has confirmed dementia and Alzheimer’s disease caused the most deaths in England last month.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s accounted for 10.1% for all deaths registered in March – and one in four people who died from COVID-19 had dementia.

Hilary Evans, Chief Executive at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “People with dementia have been hit disproportionately hard during the pandemic, and these latest figures released by the ONS show that as one crisis appears to ease, another remains as urgent as ever.

“Dementia is one of the biggest health challenges we are facing and the pandemic has only served to highlight the urgency with which we must tackle it. The government must honour its manifesto pledge to double its funding for dementia research.

“The nation’s scientific community has responded magnificently to the COVID-19 pandemic and shows what can be achieved when people come together to deal with such a significant health challenge. With more funding, we can use the lessons learned during the pandemic as an opportunity to enhance research into dementia and move closer to finding a life-changing treatment by 2025.”

New tech deployed for cancer patients in Oldham

The Christie NHS Foundation Trust has installed surface-guided radiation therapy, using a technique called deep inspiration breath-hold, at their local radiotherapy centre.

Surface guided radiation therapy is an emerging technique that uses stereo vision to track patients in 3D, helping to keep the treatment away from the heart and reducing the harmful risk to patients.

Julie Davies, who leads the team at Oldham said “It is an exciting development in the care we can offer our patients, using the latest technology to help us to reduce the chance of side effects treatment can sometimes cause.”

New cardiology centre revealed in Newcastle Upon Tyne

A new £2.5 million pound facility has opened at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, as part of Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The acute cardiac care unit is a merger of two existing wards, and has been redesigned to support a new model of care including two newly appointed heart failure nurses.

Consultant cardiologist, Dr Kris Bailey, said of the new unit, “Patients admitted by the Emergency Department or Assessment Suite with worsening heart failure or chest pain that needs further investigation are usually admitted to hospital for treatment and can have quite lengthy stays. Our new cardiac day unit will act as a short-stay care facility where patients can be assessed, treated and monitored for a time before being able to go home the same day.”