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RD&E Hospital takes action to reduce risk of acute kidney injury among patients


The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital has introduced a range of preventative measures aimed at reducing the risk of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) among patients admitted as an emergency.

The measures have been taken ahead of the publication of NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines on the management of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) this week.  These guidelines highlighted the importance of awareness and early recognition of this condition seen in up to 15 – 20% of emergency hospital admissions across the UK.
One of the improvements that is being made is the recruitment of specialist AKI outreach nurses - the first of their kind in SW Peninsula – who, when in post by October, will focus on early identification of AKI and education of medical and nursing staff across the Trust.

Dr Chris Mulgrew, Consultant Nephrologist at the Exeter Kidney Unit, explained:
‘The Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust had already listed AKI as one of the key elements of the Patient Safety strategy for the current year, and work to improve recognition and management of AKI in the hospital as suggested by NICE has been underway for some time, led by staff from Exeter Kidney Unit. 

A multi-disciplinary AKI working group has been established, involving medical, nursing and laboratory staff, with the purpose of drawing up guidelines for use across the hospital aimed at reducing the incidence of AKI, particularly in those at high-risk. 

An electronic alert system for AKI, which was implemented in 2012, aims to ensure early changes in kidney function are brought to the attention of clinical staff as early as possible. This system is useful in identifying high-risk groups of patients and its establishment is in common with other hospitals across the south-west. 

We are confident that these measures, in addition to those published by NICE yesterday, will continue to ensure that patients in our hospital receive the best possible care.’


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