Forth Valley

Forth Valley Health Board

Service commenced

December 1999

Total board population


Urban / rural split

80% / 20%

Specialist HF nurse WTE posts

3 WTE (4 staff)

Further details

(Actual number of staff)2008 - 3.2 WTE (4 staff)
SIGN Ratio1:97,795 (2008 1:89,392)
Ave. caseload per post140 (community and hospital)
Individual patients managed by service (average year)300 patients
Service ProvisionHome visits 20% / Clinic Appointments 80%
Provision for HF-PEFNo
Administration support per week30 hours (across service)
Providing education to non-specialist staffYes – Secondary care: individual and group teaching with staff nurses and healthcare assistants in cardiology wards and clinics; Primary care: create meetings
Doctor with specialist interest in Heart FailureYes - 1 Consultant
Cardiac Rehabilitation available/number seenYes - 50 patients per year
Access to psychological support referral pathwayAdequate

Notes on current service provision

Manage patients with LVSD and symptomatic Heart Failure. Referrals received from wards, Cardiology and other clinics, Open Access Echocardiography and General Practice. Actively discharge patients once optimised and stable; liaise with SNAHFS as appropriate.

Funding in comparison to 2008

Core funded by NHS Forth Valley


Only one nurse undertakes outreach visits for Forth Valley. Managing in-patient workload with out-patient clinics and unpredictability of help-line calls all stretches service provision. Increasingly complex patients, particularly those with significant renal dysfunction. Unable to respond to demand to review patients with HF-PEF.

Development opportunities

HF nurses, in conjunction with consultants, implement evidence- based medicine in patients admitted with decompensation using the HF bundle and a holistic approach incorporating discharge planning. Access to Day Medicine Unit for patients who require IV diuretics. Provide pre-op assessment and education for patients undergoing implantation of a cardio-defibrillator [ICD].