Healthcare Associated Infections – Britons will go a long way to avoid them – A guest post from MindMetre Research



As regular readers of the blog will know we has been covering the topics of superbugs and the related issue of MRSA here at PatientTalk.Org.

So we are delighted to share this guest post from MindMetre Research which tells us more about a recent study the contacted in the UK looking at attitudes toward hospital provision and infection.

They share “How far would you go to avoid being treated in a hospital with a poor record for antibiotic-resistant Healthcare Associated Infections (HCAIs), or ‘superbugs’? The answer – “up to a hundred miles” – according to almost half of British citizens.

Latest research on the subject from MindMetre seeks to calibrate the likelihood of British citizens to insist on treatment at an alternative hospital if their local provider had a below average record of HCAI reduction, along with the distance they would be prepared to go to get treatment in a safer environment.

The findings from the MindMetre study were definitive and clear:
· 76% of citizens say that if they learned that their hospital was a low performer on HCAI reduction, they would insist their GP referred them to a hospital with a better record;
· 83% would be happy to travel 20 miles to be treated in a hospital with a better HCAI reduction record than their local hospital;
· 62% would be happy to travel 50 miles for treatment;
· And 48% would be happy to travel 100 miles in the same situation.

Paul Lindsell, Managing Director at MindMetre Research, comments, “In the new structure of the NHS, with acute clinical services commissioned by GP-managed Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG), patient mobility has become a clear and present reality. Patients, in partnership with their GP, can choose to be treated at an Acute Trust of their choice, with the associated funds following the patient. CCGs are clearly charged with the mandate to improve patient outcomes, and so offering this level of patient choice is systemically built in to the new NHS structure.”

“Acute Trusts have done a great job addressing very specific HCAIs, notably MRSA and C.difficile, but there is a rising tide of other infections, and the problem needs to be addressed holistically.”

“This research note clearly demonstrates that Acute Trusts need to take their initiatives to reduce HCAIs even more seriously if they are to avoid patients opting to be treated at a hospital with a better record, with funds following the patient.” ”

Research Methodology
Fieldwork was conducted by MindMetre Research between May and July 2014, in person and via online questionnaires, amongst a nationally representative sample of 2,003 British citizens (age, gender, region, social class). Margin of error: – +/- 1.78%

About MindMetre
MindMetre, part of the Lindsell Marketing Group, is a leading consumer and business analyst. The organisation has been investigating trends in a number of fields and sectors since the late-1990s, including health & medicine, finance, central & local government and internet technology. Research programmes are regularly conducted across the globe, embracing geographies from the Americas to the Far East. In the healthcare sector, MindMetre is particularly known for its series on healthcare financing, beginning in the early 2000s. All MindMetre research activity strictly protects the privacy and confidentiality of respondents.

Would you buy a copy of your X-ray?

Would you buy a copy of your X-ray?

Would you buy a copy of your X-ray?

Just having returned from a short vacation in Greece I have been forced to look at all the emails I ignored while sipping retsina and eating excellent rabbit cooked with wine and onions.

So I must confess I actually laughed out loud when I read this article from Leicester’s Hospitals.

They said ” It is now easier than ever for patients to buy copies of their x-rays. The Imaging Department at Leicester’s Hospitals has an exciting, new payment machine for patients who want personal copies of their x-ray images.

The new machine has been installed in the x-ray waiting room in the Balmoral building at the Royal. For a flat fee of £10, the images are burned onto an encrypted disc and posted out to patients at home the next working day*.

Colin Ross, superintendent radiographer for Leicester’s Hospitals, said: “We are really pleased to be able to offer this additional service to our patients who often ask our radiographers for copies of their pictures. Until now there has not been a quick and straight forward way for us to do this.”

Colin adds: “Although many hospitals in the UK are able to offer patients the chance to purchase ultrasound pictures of their babies, we are not aware of anywhere else that has one of these machines which allows patients to buy personal copies of their x-ray images.”

The new machine allows patients to pay for copies of their x-ray images by cash or card. It applies to all x-rays taken on the day, but does not extend to scans or historic x-rays.”

But then I remembered years ago my sister tried to buy a copy the x-ray taken of her broken arm. And most parents have copies of the ultrasound scan taken of their children. I have.

On the other hand people in the UK may consider it back door to privatisation of the UK’s National Health Service.

So what do you think? It would be great if you could take the poll below to share your views. Feel free to expand upon them in the comments section below.

Thanks in advance!

Cerebral Palsy Awareness. Share to spread awareness!

Cerebral Palsy Awareness

Cerebral Palsy Awareness

Please use this graphic to help spread awareness of cerebral palsy.

Pulmonary Hypertension – Share this great Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Graphic

Pulmonary Hypertension

Pulmonary Hypertension

Pulmonary Hypertension – Share this great Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Graphic!

Huntington’s Disease Awareness – Awareness Post for the Day

Huntington's Disease Awareness

Huntington’s Disease Awareness

Please share our Huntington’s Disease Awareness graphic from Donnee Spencer.

You can find out more about Huntington’s Disease here.

Please like and share to raise awareness.

Have you ever heard of Hemiplegia? If not you need to find out more.

Hemiplegia Awareness

Hemiplegia Awareness

Hemiplegia effects one in one thousand people.

Hemiplegia is considered type of cerebral palsy that can result from damage to different parts of the brain that control muscle movements. Hemiplegia means the paralysis of one side of the body. A related term, hemiparesis, is a weakness on just one side of the body. The paralysis in the body occurs on the side opposite to the section of affected brain in children with Hemiplegia .

You can find out more about Hemiplegia here.

Get informed about Graves Disease – Help spread awareness

 Graves Disease

Graves Disease

Find out about Graves Disease and help raise awareness of this autoimmune condition which affects the thyroid. The normal enlargement is called goitre.

This leads to hyperthyroid symptoms such as increased heartbeat, muscle weakness, disturbed sleep, and irritability. It can also cause bulging eyes .

Spread Congenital Heart Disease Awareness – Share Donnee Spencer’s brilliant graphic

 Congenital Heart Disease

Congenital Heart Disease

While PatientTalk.Org is on vacation each day we will be sharing a Donnee Spencer medical awareness image.

Today we are featuring Congenital Heart Disease.

Please like and share to help us spread awareness.

This blog is now on vacation – we return on 30th October 2014



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World Thrombosis Day Shines Spotlight on Deadly Blood Clots – Read our interview with Dr Hillary Jones on Deep Vein Thrombosis

Dr Hilary Jones on Thrombosis

Dr Hilary Jones on Thrombosis

Last Monday 13th October saw World Thrombosis Day 2014.  To mark the day we conducted an interview with Dr Hilary Jones on the subject of Thrombosis.

But did you you know this seven important facts about thrombosis?

1) Sitting at a desk, in a car, or a train for just a 90 minute period of time can reduce blood flow behind the knee by 50%, increasing the risk of thrombosis – a blood clot
2) Other risk factors: Major surgery, such as orthopaedic or surgery for cancer, or extended time in the hospital, heart diseases, pregnancy, smoking, hormone therapy, being overweight/obesity, dehydration, family history and cancer
3) Deep vein thrombosis (a blood clot in the leg) or a pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the lung) kills one person every 37 seconds in the western world (1,2) – in England more than one in 1,000 adults could be affected by blood clots every year (3)
4) Blood clots can also travel to the brain causing strokes. These types of clots occur in people who have atrial fibrillation (an irregular heartbeat) – a condition which affects over one million people in England (4)
5) New data reveals that 75% of people in the UK wouldn’t know what to expect if they experienced a blood clot in the lungs (5) – highlighting the need to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of thrombosis

6) itting at a desk, in a car, or a train for just a 90 minute period of time can increase the risk of thrombosis – a blood clot
7) There are a number of effective treatment options available to treat and prevent blood clots

The interview was conducted bu Antonia Lipinski on behalf of PatientTalk.Org.

Lipinski So what actually is DVT and why is it so dangerous?
DR JONES Well DVT stands for Deep Vein Thrombosis. This means that a blood clot forms in the veins which lie deep in the tissues of the body and this particularly affects the calf muscle veins. When people complain of pain and tenderness in the calf with swelling and redness it could be that they’ve got Deep Vein Thrombosis. The significance of Deep Vein Thrombosis is this that it is a very common disorder and it can have far reaching consequences. If a piece of the blood clot should break off into the circulation and be carried onwards towards the heart and lungs its means its can cause a pulmonary embolism. That is part of a clot that has broken off and has lodged in the lungs obstructing the oxygenising of blood and that can have very serious consequences and leads to a fair number of deaths every year.
Lipinski Who can get it?
DR JONES Well all most anybody can suffer from deep vein thrombosis. We know that it is more common with age but a young person who has had an injury, somebody who is having surgery, somebody is pregnant and somebody with a family history or a previous history of blood clots because some people have a genetic predisposition towards forming clots in the blood. All of these people, people who smoke even are more prone to blood clots so nobody is immune from blood clots and every 37 seconds one person in the Western world dies from a blood clot so that’s how significant it is.
Lipinski How is it treated?
DR JONES Well we know that we can to some extent we can prevent blood clots in people before it has actually happened. For example if somebody is having surgery we use compression stockings to increase the blood flow through the veins and prevent the stasis which occurs during the operation but more often then not somebody who has a deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism we prevent further occurrences. We treat them. We anti coagulate them. PATIENTTALK.ORG Do flight socks actually work?
DR JONES Yes if they are up to the back of the knee and they are compressing the veins significantly. When someone is on a long haul flight, just as any kind of inactivity would do, it increases the blood flow through the veins and prevents the risk of blood clots so they really do help just as they do in a hospital setting or in anyone who is inactive and immobile for several hours at a time.
Lipinski How is PE different from DVT?
DR JONES Well a pulmonary embolism is where the blood clot breaks off from the leg and is carried up towards the lungs and blocks an artery which the feeds the lung with blood that is ready to be oxygenated. So somebody with a pulmonary embolism will be short of breath. They’ll have chest pain. They’ll have an increased heart rate. They might even cough up some blood and feel light headed. Also they might have no symptoms at all in the early stage as my brother didn’t when he had multiple pulmonary embolisms. Now he is a fit guy. He is an oarsman who rows to a very high standard and he had an abnormal collection of blood vessels in his thigh which he didn’t know about and he wondered why he was a bit more breathless when he was ain a rowing race. He saw a friend who happened to be a cardiologist who recognised the signs straight away. He was treated successfully and those abnormal blood vessels were removed. As I say anyone can be affected and the pulmonary embolism is much more serious because in many cases it can prove fatal if not treated quickly.
Lipinski What lifestyle changes can we make to prevent DVT?
DR JONES I think the first thing is to stop smoking because this thickens the blood and makes it stickier so blood clots are more likely to form. So giving up smoking is a really good step forward. Losing weight or normalising weight so you are not carrying too much weight is good. Reporting any kind of injury around the calf muscle particularly is important. Exercising on a regular basis because when you are using your leg muscles they are pumping and compressing in a rhythmically way the blood vessels underneath the muscle so the muscle pump is a good way of preventing blood clots and improving blood flow. So exercise, giving up smoking and just taking care of yourself are all important, normalising weight, these are all important. Probably nothing more so then recognising the signs and symptoms of DVT. It would be pain and tenderness in the calf, swelling of the ankle and foot, redness in this area, dilution of the surface veins so the veins look more prominent and an increased warmth compared to the other side. It always a good to compare the affected leg to the other side and if you have any doubts at all go and see your doctor and say could this be a DVT.


Further regional statistics on people diagnosed with DVT and PE in England 2010/11 can be found at:



1. Cohen AT et al. Thromb Haemost. 2007; 98 (4):756-764;

2. Roger VL et al. Circulation. 2012; 125(1):e2-e220

3. From prevention to treatment; taking the pulse of NHS services. Bayer HealthCare. November 2013

4. AF Association, A Guide to AF within the Cardiovascular Disease Outcomes Strategy. December 2013

5. Data on file Bayer HealthCare. Global online survey conducted in over 20,000 adults aged 18-64 between 17th July-11th August 2014. UK sample size 1,000 adults

6. International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis. World Thrombosis Day. Available at: Last accessed October 2014

7. Patient UK. Deep vein thrombosis. Available at: Last accessed October 2014

8. Turpie AGG et al. BMJ. 2002; 325: 887-890

9. NHS Choices. Causes of deep vein thrombosis. Available at: Last accessed October 2014

10. Mayo Clinic. Deep vein thrombosis. Available at: Last accessed October 2014

11. Life Blood, the Thrombosis Charity. Reducing the Risk of Thrombosis.

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