Local Healthy Hearts project shortlisted for national award

A programme to reduce the impact of heart disease across the region has been shortlisted for the Cardiovascular Care Initiative of the Year category at the HSJ Value Awards 2020, which recognise outstanding dedication to making things better in the NHS.

NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is one of the partners taking part in the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Healthy Hearts initiative, which is commissioned by West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership and delivered by Yorkshire and Humber Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) to support GP practices and healthcare professionals to reduce the incidence of cardiovascular disease across Leeds and the wider region.

The Healthy Hearts initiative is a three-year project that aims to reduce the number of people affected by heart disease including strokes and heart attacks across West Yorkshire and Harrogate by 10% by 2021, meaning 1,100 fewer cardiovascular disease events. And it focuses on three specific risk factors including blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes.

The first phase of the project aims to identify people who may have high blood pressure who are not yet diagnosed, and those who need to better control their hypertension to a safe target below 140/90. Locally from January 2019 to January 2020 more than 1,100 new people were added to the hypertension register. This means they are more closely monitored. There was also an increase in the number of people, more than 1,200, who now have their hypertension better controlled to safe limits. Importantly this could help prevent 9 deaths, 18 strokes and 12 heart attacks over the next five years.

Dr Youssef Beaini, a GP and Clinical Lead for the initiative, commented, “We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the Cardiovascular Care Initiative of the Year category, recognising the collaborative efforts and dedication of our partners over the last 12 months to successfully implement the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Healthy Hearts project. We are committed to delivering improved outcomes for patients and the wider organisation, and to be chosen among the other incredible nominees is a wonderful achievement”.

Dr Gordon Sinclair, Clinical Chair for NHS Leeds CCG’s, said: “The Healthy Hearts programme is showing very encouraging results and is an excellent example of the difference that the partnership is making. The results so far in Leeds show that sharing good practice in this way can help save lives. Being recognised in this way is a real bonus for all of those involved”.

The awards judging panel comprised a diverse range of highly regarded figures across the NHS and wider healthcare sector. To be shortlisted as a finalist for these awards, despite tough competition from hundreds of brilliant applicants, is a mark of real achievement for the Partnership, Yorkshire and Humber AHSN and partners. The Healthy Hearts initiative was selected based on the positive impact that the project has had within their wider organisation.

HSJ editor Alastair McLellan added: “We would like to congratulate West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership, Yorkshire and Humber AHSN and partners on being nominated in the category of Cardiovascular Care Initiative of the Year ahead of HSJ Value Awards 2020. We are looking forward to welcoming them to the ceremony in May, to join us in recognising the very best NHS teams and projects in the healthcare sector. This year’s finalists are of an outstanding calibre and all of them are exceptionally dedicated to enhancing healthcare across the UK.”

The winners will be selected following a rigorous, “live panel” judging stage ahead of the awards ceremony in November.