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E2L News


Head Acute Dysphasia Screen for Stroke (HeADSS)

A collaboration with Cwm Taf Health Board has resulted in a software screening application for swallowing difficulties for acute stroke patients. In December 2011 the work of Dr Kathryn Head, Clinical Lead and Speech and Language Therapist, received recognition by receiving MEDIWALES NHS Judges’ Award. Dysphagia - difficulty in swallowing - affects up to 78% of stroke patients and a bedside dysphagia screening process was required for improving patient safety. E2L have implemented the screening process as a standalone application for consistent assessing and recording acute stroke patient’s capacity to swallow.

cwm taf screening of head acute dysphasia stroke patients

E2L have implemented the research work undertaken and provided a software implementation which is now ready for clinical trials at some 10 hospitals throughout Wales. Provision of application within the development time of only one month has ensured that the Research will be implemented into a workable tool and fulfill a clinical need in the very short term.

Kathryn explained, “The world literature and an audit of screening practices in England and Wales highlighted a need for a universal way of screening for signs of swallowing impairment in patients admitted to hospital after having a stroke. Different hospitals across Wales were using different methods of screening and at the time of the audit, patients could wait several days for a swallow assessment. Due to the associated risks surrounding impaired swallowing, some patients were placed nil by mouth as a matter of course.”