Welcome to the home of the Stop a Stroke project in Wales

To find out what the Stop a Stroke project is doing in your Health Board and to access local resources click on the buttons to the right.

To hear more about the background to the project, watch the video below.


In June 2014, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published Clinical Guideline 180 “AF: management” its aim was to “ensure that people receive the best management to help prevent harmful complications, in particular stroke and bleeding” In addition the NHS operating framework  prioritised AF and stroke prevention as  key areas for maintaining healthcare quality and improvements. A key feature of both is the early identification of patients at risk of thromboembolic events and the prompt initiation of an oral anticoagulant as this has been shown to reduce the risk of stroke by two thirds. These recommendations were supported by the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group and endorsed by Welsh Government.



The Stop a Stroke project aims to support every Health Board across Wales to initiate a sustainable approach to reviewing the treatment of patients with atrial fibrillation to reduce the risk of having a stroke.

Did you know?
  • 7422 people suffered a stroke in Wales in 2014-2015 [1].

  • ​Atrial fibrillation is a contributing factor to 20% of strokes in England, Wales and Northern Ireland [1].

  • Only 4 in 10 stroke patients with known atrial fibrillation (AF) are on anticoagulant treatment on admission to hospital in England, Wales and Northern Ireland [1].

  • Increasing the proportion of people with AF on anticoagulants will reduce the number of people having an ischaemic stroke [4].

Stroke Facts
  • Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia and a significant risk factor for stroke. 

  • The average cost of care (acute and rehabilitation) per stroke patient is currently £23 315 [1]. 

  • Only 1/3 of people who have AF-related stroke have been treated with anticoagulants [3].

  • The management of AF in UK Primary Care presents a resource challenge that is set to rise as our population ages [2].

  1. Stroke Association, State of the Nation Stroke Statistics January 2016.  Available via: https://www.stroke.org.uk/sites/default/files/stroke_statistics_2015.pdf  Accessed on 15/06/16

  2. Managing atrial fibrillation in Primary Care: key issues for Primary Care practitioners, managers and commissioners of service, 2015.  Accessed via https://www.bhf.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/best-practice/managing-atrial-fibrillation-in-primary-care Accessed on 05/09/16.

  3. https://www.bhf.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/best-practice/managing-atrial-fibrillation-in-primary-care/af-and-stroke---we-can-do-better  Accessed 09/01/2017.

  4. Together for Health. Stroke Annual Report 2016.  Accessed via:  http://gov.wales/docs/dhss/publications/161128stroke-reporten.pdf on 09/01/2017.


Audit Plus

Stop a Stroke Audit Plus

The Stop a Stroke Audit Plus tool is the National audit tool to identify patients with atrial fibrillation and their current anticoagulant medication.  

It complies with 2017/2018 QOF measures and will inform GP practices of the number of patients due an AF review.

Access the tool using the Audit Plus system on your GP practice computers.


The 'How Do I?' guidance document can be accessed via the link on the left.

Annual review read codes

Data collected by the Audit Plus module depends on the read codes allocated to a patient record in a GP practice.  

In order to capture the medication reviews completed for patients with atrial fibrillation and monitor your progress it is suggested to use one of the three read codes recognised by Audit Plus:

8BT3 anticoagulant medication review

  • use this even if the patient is taking no anticoagulant medication or antiplatelet therapy

6A9 atrial fibrillation annual review

66QB annual warfarin assessment


Patient video

The Cardiff and Vale Stop a Stroke team have developed a video to encourage patients with atrial fibrillation to speak to healthcare professionals regarding their anticoagulation.

If you would like to obtain this video to play in your GP practice or hospital please contact the team via the details at the bottom of the page.


Patient Information

The Stop a Stroke project aims to help you receive the most appropriate treatment if you are diagnosed with atrial fibrillation. 


Providing information to support your choice of anticoagulation in discussion with your healthcare professional is an important part of this.

The Stop a Stroke project is developed in conjunction with the British Heart Foundation.  Their website has lots of information and useful videos about atrial fibrillation.


One of their videos can be seen to the right.  Other resources can be accessed by visiting their website.


To access more information on the types of medication your healthcare professional may discuss with you please click on the buttons below.

If you have any concerns or feel you need to discuss your treatment please make an appointment to see your local healthcare professional.


Betsi Cadwaladr UHB

Resources for this Health Board will be added as soon as they are made available.


Cardiff and Vale UHB

Staff in GP practices can contact the Stop a Stroke team within Cardiff and Vale for advice on anticoagulating patients with atrial fibrillation using the e-advice portal.

Use the frequently asked questions to see if your query can be solved straight away.

If you work for another Health Board these are accessible but please check with local guidelines.

Access the prescriber support documents for prescribing anticoagulation for people with atrial fibrillation here.

To contact the Cardiff and Vale team please see the contact information at the bottom of the page.

Resources for this Health Board will be added as soon as they are made available.

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Hywel Dda UHB

Resources for this Health Board will be added as soon as they are available.


Powys THB

Resources for this Health Board will be added as soon as they are available.


Meet The Team

Dr Raza Alikhan

Consultant Haematologist,

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board

Dr Shakeel Ahmad

Clinical Lead for Stroke 

Cardiff & Vale UHB

Associate Medical Director for Neuroscience & Complex diseases

Welsh Health Specialist Services Committee (WHSSC)

Tristan Groves

Anticoagulation pharmacist

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board

Vicki Burrell

Senior Service Improvement Programme Manager,

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board

Simon Scourfield

Primary Care Operations Management Lead,

NHS Wales Informatics Service


Tristan Groves
Anticoagulation specialist pharmacist
University Hospital of Wales
Heath Park

CF14 4XW



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