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Ultrasound injections to make patient experience ultra-quick

24 August 2017

Health Care

A new ultrasound injection service at Southend Hospital is rapidly speeding up patient waiting times, cutting them from up to 30 weeks to just two weeks.

Previously the process would typically take several months, multiple visits and require a day stay admission, now it's just a short consultation, visit to the injection clinic and that's it. No day stay in hospital or waiting for a slot to be available in the operating day theatre.

Sister Karen Coleman, Clinical Nurse Specialist and Manager of Orthopaedic Outpatients, explained how it is making a huge difference: "The reduction in waiting

time is fantastic for patients. We have also reduced the waiting time on the day of the procedure, from four hours to less than 30 minutes and we have cut down on patient appointment times. It's now just one visit instead of three."

The new process gives patients a more flexible choice with dedicated ultrasound guided injection clinics performed by Mr A Reda, Orthopaedic Specialty Doctor, taking place during morning and afternoon sessions on a weekly basis in the Orthopaedic Outpatients Department.

Previously a radiographer and image intensifier equipment were needed for guided injections, but performing injections using ultrasound means that staff and equipment are freed up for other procedures. It's also reducing the pressure for medical records now that patient notes are not required for day stay admissions.

In some instances the injection can even be performed on the day of diagnosis, if there is an available slot on that day. All of which means a patient could receive their treatment on their very first visit, followed up with a phone consultation within six to eight weeks.

ENDS

Notes to editor

Ultrasound guided injections are given to patients for the relief of pain from many different conditions including trochanteric bursisis -  a type of inflammation that affects your hips - Mortons neuroma - a painful foot condition that affects one of the nerves between the toes and plantar fasciitis - which typically causes a stabbing pain in the bottom of the foot near the heel.