Jim Shannon – 2015 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Jim Shannon on 2015-12-15.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to reduce and treat irregular heartbeats in infants that can lead to premature death.

Ben Gummer

Sudden loss of life can occur through diagnosed and previously undiagnosed heart conditions in children of any age. This is a devastating event to the families involved and there is no simple solution to prevent every case.

A large part of the review of congenital heart services that reported in July 2015 focused on producing gold standards for the care of children and infants with heart problems. These standards have now been agreed and will be implemented in April 2016.

One of the key workstreams arising from the review is improvement in detection of heart disease early in life and there are increasing numbers of specialists involved in this area of cardiology. Research and development strives to improve identification of high risk cases and refine screening programs to aid in reducing these shocking events.