Point of care blood testing by Specialist Paramedics managing patients presenting with Acute Frailty
A single site quality improvement project, using POC blood tests to help inform decision making for patients >65 presenting to specialist paramedics with acute frailty syndrome, leading to better decision making and at scene discharge rates.
Find your nearest AHSN
Patients >65 presenting to ambulance services with acute frailty syndrome are a complex clinical group and require careful risk stratification and management. Oxford AHSN provided South Central Ambulance Service’s Frailty Specialist Paramedics with the Abbott Alinity machine and cartridges to perform blood tests on scene to help them inform their clinical decision making. Paramedics’ confidence increased, at scene discharge rates improved along with clinical outcomes.
This quality improvement study showed point of care blood tests (POCbT) to have a positive impact on all stated aims. The project results show promise of POCbT in both the pre-hospital environment, and in the field of frailty
- Dolly McPherson, Trainee Advanced Clinical Practitioner, South Central Ambulance Service.
How did the Innovation Exchange help?
After further validation, the Innovation exchange will be useful in disseminating this project further, enabling more widespread use of pre-hospital POCT.
Impact & Outcomes
Results showed improved (self-reported) confidence in clinical decision making and patient disposition. This confidence was validated by improved discharge on scene and lowered recontact rates and patient management post referral. Health economic analysis was performed on the data collected, and yielded a net saving of £50,159, as well as showing significant promise for the on-going implementation of POCT in the pre-hospital setting.