27th November 2015

Healthy Hearts beats its way to the top in national awards

L-R:  BHH team member Maciek Gwozdziewicz, Bronte Sykes (nurse and clinical champion, Mayfield Medical Centre) and Dr Youssef Beaini, clinical lead cardiovascular

Bradford’s innovative Healthy Hearts programme has received more plaudits after it scooped two national awards.

At the General Practice Awards 2015 last night, the team from NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) won general practice team of the year and clinical team of the year – cardiovascular.

The awards are designed to recognise and reward the hard work and innovation carried out in GP practices up and down the UK.

Another local winner was Bevan Healthcare – a GP practice providing health and social care to homeless people, asylum seekers and refugees across the Bradford district. It won the innovators of the year award for its outreach services.

Dr Chris Harris, long-term conditions lead for Bradford Districts CCG, said: “These awards are terrific recognition for all the hard work and dedication that the Bradford’s Healthy Hearts team has put into making this programme such a success.

"Working closely with hospital consultants and other health professionals, GPs in Bradford are pulling out all the stops to reduce the number of people suffering from cardiovascular disease. We are confident that Healthy Hearts is leading the way in the prevention, diagnosis and management of cardiovascular disease.”

Bradford’s biggest killer is cardiovascular disease (CVD) – a collection of conditions (such as stroke, atrial fibrillation, coronary heart disease and heart failure) which affect the heart and blood vessels. 

Set up in response to this health need, Bradford’s Healthy Hearts’ (BHH) aim is, by 2020, to reduce the number of people in Bradford dying from cardiovascular disease (CVD) by a minimum of 10%, including 150 strokes and 350 heart attacks.

The BHH team began working with doctors and patients from GP practices in Bradford Districts CCG) in October 2014, but the project is now being rolled out in Bradford City CCG. The project includes strong links with local hospital consultants and community pharmacies.

More than 800 people in Bradford are now on vital stroke preventive medicine, and more than 10,000 patients have had their cholesterol treatment optimised. These improvements could potentially prevent or postpone 135 strokes or heart attacks each year.

BHH is aimed at reducing the risk of stroke and heart attack in people who are in risk groups and is being developed over three years targeting three main areas:

  • vascular disease – including patients with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and peripheral arterial disease
  • atrial fibrillation (AF) – a condition which triggers abnormalities in the rhythm of the heart
  • heart failure.

The campaign has also seen a reduction of 10% in strokes, heart attacks and deaths from CVD.

Over 1,800 new patients have also been diagnosed with high blood pressure and are now receiving the appropriate treatment and support.