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Our rapid assessment stroke clinic (RASC) was established as part of a single point of access for general practitioners to refer patients with suspected transient cerebral or ocular ischaemic attacks (TIA) or recovered non-hospitalised stroke in response to the publication of the National Clinical Guidelines for Stroke1 and the National Service Framework for Older People.2 Similar rapid access neurovascular clinics have been set up throughout the United Kingdom to provide readily available access to primary care for the management of similar patients. These clinics have significant revenue costs for the NHS, and hence the importance of reviewing their process and outcome. We now report the fate of non-attendees to highlight the risk of early stroke.
Between October 2000 and December 2002, 1460 patients were referred to the RASC. When a referral (usually by phone or fax) is received, the patient is contacted by phone to arrange a convenient appointment, or by post if not …
Competing interests: none declared