Published: 26/09/2002, Volume II2, No. 5824 Page 4

Primary care trusts involved in the coronary heart disease collaborative programme are reducing deaths at a rate four times' greater than PCTs that are not in the scheme, according to a new paper.

The preliminary findings from the National Primary Care Development Team, which runs the CHD collaboratives, compare the first two waves of the schemes with the reductions in mortality among PCTs not in the scheme.

The reduction in the number of deaths in the first wave was 4.3 times more than the reduction in PCTs outside the scheme. The first wave saw a drop in the number of deaths from 6,252 to 5,714.

The second scheme showed an improvement in the reduction of deaths from 6,982 to 6,443 - 3.9 times' greater than among PCTs not in the collaboratives.

NPCDT head John Oldham said the dramatic success was rooted in the way the scheme showed people how to use wellknown measures systematically to tackle and manage CHD.

He said: 'We didn't invent them.

It is about making sure people systematically work through the measures that everybody already knows.'

Dr Oldham said ways of working such as nurse-led clinics, proactive call and recall systems, valid registers of patients and finding new ways to engage patients were key factors in fighting the disease.

The research is expected to form the basis of a peer-review publication.