Patients with vein problems should know whether their doctor gets good results of not. They should know whether any recommended treatment works well or not. These questions will be answered by The College of Phlebology Venous Registry.
Some clinics advertise that they are the cheapest. Some doctors boast that they treat many conditions including veins. However, patients need to know that they are going to get a successful treatment, even in the long term. After all, there is no point having the cheapest, if the veins recur a year or two later.
This is summed up in the old expression “buy cheap, buy twice“!
So how do patients tell which doctors, clinics, hospitals or techniques get good results?
– Patient reviews:
are often collected within weeks of treatment. As most varicose veins and venous leg ulcers recur after one or two years, such early reviews do not help much.
– Research studies:
should reassure patients that a technique is good. However, research does not say whether the doctor can use the technique! After all, not everyone who has a Ferrari drives as fast and safely as Lewis Hamilton!
show results in certain groups of patients. However, these groups are selected. Hence, patients can’t be sure that the results are relevant to them.
All good vein doctors and clinics should be producing ongoing patient reviews, performing original research to improve venous treatments and perform regular audits to check on their results.
But … is there a better way to help a patient choose their doctor, clinic, hospital, or treatment?
In medicine, a registry is a huge database that follows all patients having a certain sort of treatment. Results are then continuously compared between doctors, clinics or hospitals, and treatment techniques.
Doctors and clinics with nothing to hide, join a registry. They add all of their patients, investigations, and treatments given. After treatment, doctors add any complications up until discharge.
The best registries, such as the College of Phlebology Venous Registry, then continue to collect data by direct email to the patient. This gives “Patient-reported outcome measures” (PROMS).
Hence, even if a doctor thinks that he/she is doing a good job, the registry will monitor whether patients are still happy over the next few years.
By following patients with varicose veins, venous leg ulcers, and pelvic congestion syndrome, it will soon become clear which doctors, clinics, hospitals, and techniques are getting acceptable results. Conversely, it will highlight those that are getting poor results after one year.
At the moment, once patients have been discharged, no one checks to see if anything went wrong later!
The registry will be able to show whether:
as well as showing who is getting the best results.
Any poor results can lead to swift action to correct what is going wrong. Steps can be taken to correct any problems. These might be:
By constant monitoring from The College of Phlebology Venous Registry, patients know that their doctors are being honest and open about their results. Any problems would be highlighted and action taken to correct it.
This is why all of the consultants at The Whiteley Clinic have signed up to be part of The College of Phlebology Venous Registry. Today, the 700th patient was added from The Whiteley Clinic.
Patients can check if vein doctors are part of this registry by looking for the registry icon, and checking the number with the list on the College of Phlebology Website.
The College of Phlebology Venous Registry has been set up through Dendrite Clinical Systems, a leading provider of clinical registries. Their registries are fully compliant with patient data security standards and GDPR.
The College of Phlebology Venous Registry is an international registry and can be made available in any language.