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Right Arrow Doctor lands prize in dragons den to fight kidney injury
24 March 2015 at 15:54
A young doctor’s idea to prevent kidney damage has landed him a major prize in a NHS version of TV’s Dragon’s Den.

Dr Andrew Falzon and his mentor, Consultant Urological Surgeon Mr Rahul Mistry, were awarded £1,000 to develop “Breaking AKI” which won them the runner-up prize in the Health Education North West Junior Doctor Advisory Team competition.

Acute kidney injury (AKI) is sudden damage to the kidneys which causes them to stop working properly. It particularly affects people over 65 but also those with long-term medical conditions such as heart failure and diabetes.

Experts estimate AKI is responsible for one-in-five emergency admissions to hospital and up to 100,000 hospital deaths of which nearly a quarter could be prevented.

“It also costs the NHS tens of millions of pounds in care but the causes of kidney injury receive hardly any media attention,” said Dr Falzon, who is a Foundation Year 1 doctor at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust. For the competition, he and Mr Mistry developed a three-pronged approach that:

• Educated and involved patients
• Promoted early recognition of symptoms
• Helped with the management of AKI in hospital

Dr Falzon designed two “Ur-ine-volved” posters to show at risk patients how to monitor their urine and how much water they should be drinking.

“By empowering patients through education, patients can assess their own hydration status through their urine colour and quantity as well as identify any symptoms that should be brought to the attention of a medical professional,” he said.

“I have also developed a form to help doctors admitting patients identify who’s at risk of AKI and patient identifier stickers which flag their concern to doctors treating them on the ward.”

Mr Mistry added: “As doctors, we’re always telling patients to drink more but it’s less straight-forward to advise how much. Andrew’s brilliant work gives us a tool to do just that as it is now self-directed patient education.

“He will be using the cash from the competition award to develop his ideas so we can begin to put them into practice.”

Issued by Tony Ellis, Marketing and Communications Manager
Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust

Telephone 01704 704494
Twitter @SONHSTrust

Notes for editors

Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust manages Southport and Formby District General Hospital and Ormskirk and District General Hospital, and is responsible for many community healthcare services for adults in Southport, Formby and West Lancashire. We also provide sexual health services across Sefton and West Lancashire. The Trust has a budget of £186m and employs 3,600 staff. In 2013/14, we saw 248,102 outpatients; treated 61,096 inpatients; made 305,750 community care contacts outside hospital; supported the birth of 2,766 babies; and attended to 95,146 urgent care cases.