OPHAT service praised by BBC


Intravenous news: BBC news report “Like most patients, William Hutcheson does not like being in hospital.
But after a fall he was left a paraplegic and confined to a wheelchair, which makes him more susceptible to bouts of infected pressure sores. To treat such a problem, most patients would face long stints in hospital so they can get intravenous antibiotics. But the 62-year-old has received the therapy at home thanks to an innovative project run by St Mary’s Hospital in London. District nurses visited William daily at home to help him with the treatment and then once a week he had a hospital check-up.”

The BBC continue “William was part of a group of hundreds of patients who have benefited from the OPHAT service (outpatient and home parenteral antimicrobial therapy) at St Mary’s, part of the Imperial College London NHS Trust. Research into the treatment, published recently in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, showed it was very effective.

Between September 2004 and April 2008 7,394 inpatient bed days at St. Mary’s were saved, the study revealed.
Jan Hitchcock, senior clinical nurse specialist, said that before OPHAT patients with chronic infections, like William, would have had no option but to have the drug therapy in hospital. But she said the benefits went further than that. “They are getting better quicker because recuperating in your own bed with your own surroundings is better. You get less sleep in hospital.” As well as high levels of patient satisfaction the hospital say they are cutting the risk of acquiring healthcare associated infections like MRSA.”

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