World Stroke Day: Leeds's increased diagnoses highlights care need

Cera is highlighting need for care after strokes.
Cera is highlighting need for care after strokes.

One of Leeds’s main health trusts will diagnose around 960 strokes every year, new figures show.

Stroke numbers in the area increased by seven per cent between 2016/17 and 2017/18, according to a Freedom of Information request put to Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust by home care provider Cera Care. And strokes were found to be the cause of death for around 150 people a year – a figure which has increased by 25 per cent in the last year, according to the results.

The findings have been released to coincide with World Stroke Day today.

The data provided by 65 NHS Trusts from across the UK shows nearly 50,000 people in their authority suffered a stroke between August 1 2016 and the end of July this year.

Nationally this means that more than 100,000 people a year are suffering from a stroke, the provider said.

According to the figures provided by the NHS Trusts, the number of deaths following a stroke in the same period remained consistent at 12 per cent, meaning that more patients now require care for the after- effects of strokes, which could cause further strain in the social care sector.

Strokes are estimated to cost the NHS £3billion every year.

Often overlooked though, is the impact that strokes can have on the social and personal lives of those suffering with a stroke and their families.

It is this aspect of stroke survival that Cera wants to draw attention to on World Stroke Day.

Sarah McEwan from Cera said: “The impact on an individual’s life after a stroke is something that our carers see day in day out.

“They know first-hand the devastating effect it can have on the individual themselves, but also their family, friends and loved ones – often leaving those close to them feeling exhausted, anxious and distressed. We have seen the need for care increase which is why we wanted to understand the full picture across the UK by speaking directly to the NHS Trusts to access their data.

“Through this data, we hope to highlight the ongoing issue and how this is affecting thousands of families every year across the UK.”

Alastair Bailey, lead nurse for stroke at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We are seeing an increase in stroke diagnosis - as technology moves on we are diagnosing strokes more quickly and efficiently. Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust is a regional specialist stroke service, providing hyper-acute care to people from across Yorkshire.

“We recently rolled out our mechanical thrombectomy service across the West Yorkshire region, offering access to life-changing interventions for stroke which can reduce disability and fatalities from stroke.”