Call for 24-hour referral for TIAs

GPs should be able to refer patients who have had a minor stroke to a specialist clinic within 24 hours, according to a report into the performance of rapid access stroke clinics.

The report by the University of Manchester’s clinical neurosciences group looked at the performance of minor stroke and TIA clinics at five hospitals in the North West of England.

It found patients were waiting an average of 15 days to be seen, more than twice as long as the recommended guideline of seven days.

The report recommends an overhaul of the clinics structure to ensure TIA and minor strokes are given, ‘priority status and treated as an emergency’, according to Dr Craig Smith a member of the clinical neurosciences group member.

He said: ‘At the moment GPs are referring patients to these clinics but often it is held just once a week. What I would like to see is an overhaul of the service to ensure that GPs can refer a patient to the clinic within 24 hours.

‘Another option is to use A&Es more. I believe that TIA is an emergency situation and it does not get that recognition across the health service. I’m not saying that every case should be referred to A&Es but with appropriate resources they may have a role to play here.’

The report, called ‘Prognosis in patients with TIA and minor stroke attending TIA services in the North West of England,’ says overhaul of the way minor strokes are dealt with is vital because of the high risk of an attack being followed by a major stroke.

Comment below and tell us what you think

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Just published

Sign pointing to hospital

NHS England seeks to clarify GPs' responsibilities when using advice and guidance

New guidance from NHS England has set out the clinical responsibilities and medicolegal...

Widespread joint pain - red flag symptoms

Presentations and red flag symptoms that may alert you to potentially serious conditions...

Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: Supporting neurodivergent doctors and staff in general practice

Talking General Practice speaks to GPs Dr Beckie Akroyd and Dr Catherine Bell about...

BMA Scotland GP committee chair Dr Andrew Buist

General practice in Scotland 'in serious trouble', warns BMA Scotland GP chair

General practice in Scotland has reached a tipping point, with demand far outstripping...

Hospital entrance

NHS England issues warning over norovirus and rising winter pressures

Almost three times as many people were in hospital with norovirus last week compared...

BMA Northern Ireland GP committee chair Dr Alan Stout

Northern Ireland GPs face deepest-ever crisis as practices hand back contracts

Northern Ireland's GP leader has warned that general practice in the region is facing...