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League of Friends donation will aid swift treatment and discharge

CoaguChek The Trauma, Orthopaedic and Rheumatology departments at University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust would like to say a big thank you to the League of Friends for their kind donation of a CoaguChek machine. The machine will ultimately assist in quicker treatment and patients being able to go home sooner.

“The medication warfarin thins the blood and helps patients who have previously had a blood clot,” explains Julia Smith, Orthopaedic Clinical Educator at University Hospitals Plymouth. “So prior to surgery, it is vital that a patient stops taking this drug, so that they aren’t at risk of bleeding during an operation.

“At present, to check a patient’s blood clotting rate (also known as INR), patients have to undergo a blood test. Samples are sent to the labs for analysis, and the results aren’t available for at least few hours, which can delay things.

“However, with the CoaguChek machine, this process is instant.”

The small handheld device measures INR with a simple ‘prick’ of a finger, similar to the type of machines used to check blood sugar levels for people with diabetes. Each device costs around £1540.

“Not only will the CoaguChek help with treating patients in our care, but it will also help with discharging patients too,” adds Julia. “After surgery, it is a delicate process for doctors and nurses to get patient INR levels back to normal as soon as possible, to prevent any further blood clots from forming.

“Being able to obtain the INR results instantly will allow doctors to issue prescriptions, and for patients to receive their medication, in a much more timely fashion. Patients will also be given an accurate reading upon discharge, which their GP can use to continue their careful monitoring and treatment.

“On the whole, we’d like to thank the League of Friends for purchasing the machine, as it will ultimately enhance the care that we provide for our patients.”

To find out more about how you can fundraise or make a donation to University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust please visit: https://www.plymouthhospitals.nhs.uk/fundraising

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