Report on Emergency Surgery Research at Letterkenny University Hospital

A report focusing upon research carried out at Letterkenny University Hospital (LUH) as part of the Emergency Surgery Outcomes Advancement Project (eSOAP) will be launched next Wednesday, 04 November.

The eSOAP research programme aims to improve the treatment and care of patients requiring emergency surgery.  eSOAP forms part of the €8.6m EU funded cross-border Centre for Personalised Medicine aimed at improving clinical decision making and patient safety for dementia, diabetes, cardiovascular, acute kidney injury and emergency surgery.  The project is supported by the European Union’s INTERREG VA Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB). Match-funding has been provided by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation in Ireland and the Department for the Economy in Northern Ireland.

One of the major challenges for health services around the world is managing the variations in care delivered associated with emergency general surgery. The research at Letterkenny University Hospital, with collaborators Altnagelvin Hospital and Raigmore Hospital (Scotland), provides a platform to make a real difference in emergency surgery research, emergency surgery outcomes, adherence to clinical guidelines and reduced cost of care delivery.

In welcoming the report, Professor William Campbell, Professor in Biology (retired), Drew University, Madison, New Jersey (Nobel Laureate) commented, “The report itself is replete with facts and figures, analysis and meta-analysis, insights and interpretations. It is a document reflecting the skills and labours of an extraordinary array of institutional partners and medical and paramedical disciplines. It is also built on the accumulated wisdom and experience of surgeons who have treated a great many emergency cases.”

Mr Michael Sugrue, Consultant Surgeon at LUH and the Project Principal Investigator added, “We have identified many exciting positive features about the way we deliver care and many opportunities to improve and remodel the system through innovation, partnership and data analytics.

“We know that Emergency General Surgery has a significant morbidity and mortality. The eSOAP programme will help reduce these and will enable us to take pride in the efforts to improve emergency surgery care in Donegal, Northern Ireland and Scotland.  Patients presenting with abdominal sepsis who undergo lifesaving surgery currently have at least 1 in 10 chance of dying. They pose one of the great needs in terms of improving delivery of care in our health service.  I believe that the registry and data-analytics are key to understanding where we can make those gains. To my knowledge this project is a world first.”

Dr Randal Parlour, Director of Research in the emergency surgery programme, acknowledged the contributions of a range of partner organisations and said, “The actualisation of this report would not have been possible without the support and collaboration of our friends and partners across the Centre for Personalised Medicine (CPM). This has included emergency surgery clinical expertise at Altnagelvin Hospital and Raigmore Hospital; the Intelligent Systems Research Centre (Ulster University); the Northern Ireland Centre for Stratified Medicine; Letterkenny Institute of Technology; and a range of industry partners.”

Copies of the report are available at – www.dcra.ie or email donna.sweeney2@hse.ie

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