State of the art, 24/7 stroke service approved for Chichester hospital

An acute stroke centre will be built in St Richard's Hospital, Chichester, after new proposals got the go ahead from NHS officials.
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It’s hoped that the stroke centre will improve outcomes for people experiencing a stroke by giving patients around-the-clock access to specialist care and facilities, meaning stroke victims can get the help they need as soon as possible. The new centre will work as part of a network alongside the Comprehensive Stroke Centre at the Royal Sussex County Hospital, in Brighton, meaning people in both East and West Sussex will live within an hour’s ambulance ride to a nationally-compliant stroke service.

Senior officials at the NHS Sussex Integrated Care Board greenlit the plans on Wednesday (November 29), but the stroke centre is actually the result of five years’ worth of hard work by leading health professionals across Sussex, who have been reviewing existing stroke protocols and identifying areas in need of improvement.

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Whilst current standards of care are good, they recognised improvements had to be made. and, from the outset, the NHS made clear that it wanted all hospital stroke services to meet national standards, and deliver excellent stroke care to local people, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

St Richard's Hospital in Chichester: Photo Connor Gormley.St Richard's Hospital in Chichester: Photo Connor Gormley.
St Richard's Hospital in Chichester: Photo Connor Gormley.

In order to make the changes and realise the benefits, the NHS has also announced that Worthing Hospital will no longer be receiving people who are experiencing a stroke. Stroke victims in the Worthing area will instead be taken to St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, or the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, depending on their circumstances.

A spokesperson for the NHS assured residents that this change will be “carefully managed as part of the detailed implementation programme,” while Chichester’s stroke centre is properly established.

Dinesh Sinha, Chief Medical Officer, NHS Sussex, said: "This new centre will have a significant benefit for people in and around the area, will further improve the care they receive when they are experiencing a stroke, and mean better outcomes for local people.

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"This is the result of years of hard work led by the leading stroke professionals in the area, and I want to thank them and everyone involved for their determination and commitment to develop proposals that are going to improve the lives of people across West Sussex."

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