PERFORMANCE: Colchester General Hospital has been praised by health minister Simon Burns for its work on preventing avoidable blood clots.

Mr Burns, MP for Chelmsford, visited the hospital on 2 March, talked to staff and patients during his two-hour visit.

Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust was given “exemplar centre” status in 2008 for its work to protect patients from potentially fatal hospital-acquired blood clots.

Since then, it has implemented a number of initiatives to prevent VTE, such as “VTE Walkabouts” by the chief executive, e-learning and has established “VTE Champions” on every ward – healthcare professionals who ensure that the highest VTE standards are maintained.

Adam Howard, consultant vascular and laparoscopic surgeon, pioneered an electronic VTE risk assessment tool which is now used elsewhere in the NHS.