As part of our programme to support clinicians, pharmacists and patients to reduce the number of atrial fibrillation (AF)-related strokes, the West of England AHSN has launched a new online toolkit.

The Don’t Wait to Anticoagulate project aims to increase the use of anticoagulation medicine in line with NICE guidance, improve the management of atrial fibrillation patients, and help patients make evidence-informed decisions about their own care.

Featuring separate resources for patients and healthcare professionals, the new website can be found at and includes guidance for:

  • Clinicians on the different anticoagulants they can prescribe for treating atrial fibrillation depending on a range of factors; the different patient stroke risk factors; and how to implement positive change in their practice to manage such a condition.
  • Patients on understanding their AF-related stroke risks and the different treatments available as well as questions that they should ask their doctor if they feel they are at risk of an AF related stroke.
  • Pharmacists when dealing with patients who have been prescribed anticoagulant medicines.

In the first phase of Don’t Wait to Anticoagulate, which is funded through a joint working project between Bayer HealthCare and the West of England AHSN, 11 GP practices across the West of England agreed to work with us to test out the models and quality improvement methods.

We are now running the project with GP practices in the Gloucestershire CCG area until March 2016, and currently 58 of the CCG’s 82 practices are signed up.

The third phase of the project starts in the new year, working with up to four other CCGs in our area to roll out this exciting project. We are also in discussions with another CCG about running the project with secondary care. Watch this space for the latest developments!

Posted on December 2, 2015

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