TAVI (transcatheter aortic valve implantation) is a minimally invasive heart valve replacement procedure that provides an alternative to open heart surgery for higher risk patients.
Following a visit to the James Cook heart unit the representatives from Vancouver reported that they were ‘at a loss to offer any advice or additional insight’ to further improve the hospital’s TAVI programme.
The team received praise for excellent outcomes, highly optimised processes of care, careful scrutiny of patient safety and outstanding leadership.
As a result, they were invited to become a Benchmark partner which will see them share their skills and knowledge with other cardiothoracic teams.
Consultant cardiologist Douglas Muir said: “We have a team-based approach here from admission to recovery with meetings at the beginning of each day to discuss any technical aspects of a case.
“You can always improve of course, but this is affirmation that we are on the right lines and that all the changes we are making, to ensure the procedure is safe but also efficient, make sense and ultimately help our patients.”
“The Vancouver team told us that they were not aware of any other hospital in the world that had a protocol for day case TAVI.”Consultant cardiologist Paul Williams.
TAVI specialist nurse Gemma McCalmont added: “The main aim of TAVI is to get people back home to enjoy a good quality of life, and if we can do that quickly and safely then we are making a real difference for our patients.”
The heart unit has also been designated as a European Centre of Excellence for the Portico Valve.