UHCW surgeons shortlisted for BMJ Awards

UHCW surgeons shortlisted for BMJ Awards

Surgical teams at Coventry’s University Hospital who have saved patients from losing their limbs have been shortlisted for a top national award.

The work to treat patients coming into hospitals with open fractures has been shortlisted for a national British Medical Journal (BMJ) award in the Surgical Team category.

Open fractures are those where a broken bone (fracture) is exposed to the external environment by a break in the skin. They are very serious injuries because they have high rates of complications such as infection and non-union (where the bone fails to heal). Open fractures are often the result of serious accidents where patients may have multiple injuries.

Because of these factors, open fractures are more likely to lead to amputation, and early treatment is vital to ensure the best outcomes.

Over the last three years, orthopaedic and plastic surgeons at UHCW NHS Trust have dramatically improved the way they care for patients with open fractures.

As well as receiving early antibiotic treatment to reduce infection either by the pre-hospital team or as soon as they arrive in A&E, patients also receive their surgery from a combined team of orthopaedic and plastic surgeons. These teams work in collaboration with anaesthetists and the emergency department to improve care for patients and perform their surgery promptly and safely.

Having orthopaedic and plastic surgeons coordinating their care means that patients need fewer operations, and spend less time in hospital. The risk of infection is reduced too because plastic surgeons can now close or cover the patients’ wounds after the orthopaedic teams have repaired their bones.

UHCW surgeons now have one of the best rates in the country for treating open fracture wounds within 72 hours.

Mr Jonathan Young, Trauma and Orthopaedics Consultant at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust, said: “We’re delighted to be shortlisted for this work, as it recognises the hard work of surgeons from different specialties working together to improve care for patients. It’s been a real team effort.

“As a major trauma centre, University Hospital in Coventry sees a lot of patients with these more serious injuries. While being shortlisted for this award is fantastic, being able to improve outcomes for our patients, and in some cases save their limbs, is what we’re most proud of.”

Professor Meghana Pandit, Chief Medical Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer at UHCW NHS Trust, said:
“I am so proud of the whole team for being shortlisted for this prestigious award, and I wish them the best of luck for the awards in May.

“At UHCW, we strive to provide the best and safest care possible. This is an example of work that is delivering real improvements in both outcomes and experience for our patients, and it is wonderful to have this recognised by the BMJ.”

The full shortlist is available here: http://thebmjawards.bmj.com/83171  

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in London on Thursday, May 4, 2017.