Irish National Audit of Stroke
The Irish National Audit of Stroke (INAS) is a clinicaly led quality audit which measures the quality of stroke care, as well as the structure of stroke services, provided to patients in all hospitals that admit acute stroke patients. Activity within the participating hospitals is measured against evidence based standards to help improve the standard of acute stroke care within Hospital Groups across the country.
This report provides data on 90% of all stroke activity in 2022, accounting for 4,999 patients in 21 hospitals. Stroke remains the second leading cause of death in middle- to higher-income countries, and it stands as the leading cause of acquired adult neurological disability in Ireland.
Stroke is a medical emergency which requires urgent treatment. The sooner a person arrives to hospital, is assessed by a doctor and receives a brain scan, the less damage is likely to happen. This results in better outcomes and less disability.
My name is Martin Quinn, and I am a stroke survivor. The stroke occurred while I was doing an interview on local radio and left me unable to answer the interviewer’s questions in a coherent manner. It resulted in me having to spend many months in rehabilitation before I regained my speech and the full use of my affected limbs. The life-changing incident left me with a desire to advocate on behalf of stroke survivors.
As a member of the Irish National Audit of Stroke Governance Committee, I want to pay tribute to those involved in the preparation of these reports. The collection of data is a crucial aspect in the recording and understanding of stroke and stroke care in Ireland. Ultimately this leads to the improvement of patient care, to prevention strategies and to overall public health. As a stroke survivor and a person diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, I am pleased to see a recommendation that opportunistic screening for AF should be carried out for all people aged 65 years and over. If implemented there is no doubt that patients will benefit from earlier detection and treatment of AF, thus lowering their risk of stroke. I would also strongly support the recommendation that the number of stroke unit beds should be increased so that at least 90% of patients with a stroke are cared for in a stroke unit. I fully support the stated outcome that all patients with a stroke will benefit from admission to a stroke unit.
Martin Quinn — PPI Representative, INAS Governance Committee