§ Ms Blears
Evaluation of the heart choice scheme is being informed by the independent patient choice trustees at a national level through a survey of patient views and with information from patient care advisers in each cardiac centre.
The early indications from the first six months of the scheme are that the initiative is popular with patients, with just under half of those eligible choosing to be treated elsewhere. Patients and their carers have particularly welcomed the continuity, advice and support of patient care advisers. These reforms, combined with substantial investment, are making a dramatic impact, improving patient experience and bringing a rapid reduction in waiting times for heart surgery.