We asked for your support to campaign against the Specialist National Commissioning Board (SNBC)'s plans to stop commissioning of a crucial treatment to prevent AF-related stroke in patients who are unable to take oral anticoagulation; left atrial appendage occlusion (LAAO).
Last February, many of you wrote to your MP's, service providers and the SNBC to support our campaign.
As a result, NHS England published a clinical policy statement on LAAO that states the procedure will not be routinely funded, but will be assessed further through a ‘commissioning through evaluation’ process.
This will ensure further evidence is accumulated while a limited number of procedures are carried out at dedicated centres.
The AF Association is involved in helping to design this process and we are pressing to ensure not only is there equity of access, but also timely referral for consideration of the procedure.
Currently plans are only in draft, and we are awaiting a review by NHS England to confirm whether the proposals are approved. It is hoped that from October 2013, NHS England will re-instate commissioning, however both the date and the detail has yet to be confirmed.
Thank you to everyone who supported us to campaign against the unjust restriction of LAAO. The AF Association strongly believes access to treatments for AF should be appropriate to the individual's health needs and equal across all health trusts.
Here is more information about the LAAO procedure atrialfibrillation.org.uk/p...