Cuts in child heart surgery units

Cuts in child heart surgery unitsThere is a possibility of three children’s hospital in London getting affected due to a planned reduction in the number of units performing children's heart surgery in England. Earlier it was 11 and now it will be seven or six.

According to experts, this move will mean surgeons and doctors being able to maintain their expertise, and services being safer.

In Bristol baby heart scandal, children had died unnecessarily and it was about 10 years ago that the idea of cutting the number of units was first thought about.

Professor Sir Ian Kennedy had led an enquiry and said, “Children should have heart surgery in fewer centres, which would be more specialist. A follow-up report published by Sir Ian on Wednesday says not all 11 centres would be able to meet new clinical standards.”

The study states that operations were stopped by Oxford's John Radcliffe because there were children deaths taking place last year and the standards are most met by the Evelina Children's Hospital in London but Leeds General Infirmary is at the list’s bottom and is placed just above John Radcliffe.

Experts state that there will be less complications and deaths if the number is cut down and it is seen that appropriate care is not provided by some centers so cutting down is important. At centers wide variation in the expertise is there and staff skills do not get developed due to low caseloads.