An evaluation of the impact of High-Intensity Specialist-Led Acute Care (HiSLAC) on emergency admissions to NHS hospitals at weekends.

Rolling News

  • HiSLAC dissemination event on Mon April 13th 2015 at the RCoA

    We are excited to announce that HiSLAC will be hosting a dissemination event on the afternoon of Monday April 13th 2015 in London at the Royal College of Anaesthetists

  • HiSLAC Project Extension

    The HiSLAC project has been successful in securing additional funding to extend the project duration from three to five years.
  • HiSLAC Chief Investigator wins IC prize

    Julian Bion, HiSLAC Chief Investigator and Professor of Intensive Care (IC)

    Medicine at the University of Birmingham, has been awarded the Intensive Care Society (ICS) President's Award.

  • Deadline extended for Directorate Level Questionnaire

    The deadline has been extended for Trusts across England to submit information on seven day services. HiSLAC’s Directorate Level Questionnaire is designed to gather non-personalised information about specialist contractual commitments to weekday and weekend service provision.

The HiSLAC project is funded by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR-HS&DR Programme Commissioned call 12/128: Organisation & delivery of 24/7 healthcare).

HiSLAC will evaluate a key component of NHS England's policy drive for 7-day services: the intensity of specialist-led care of emergency medical admissions, with a particular focus on weekend provision. This research is important for patients and for NHS strategy because it offers a unique opportunity to evaluate the impact of the transition to seven-day working, and to understand factors likely to impede or enhance the effectiveness of this change in practice.

In addition to examining the impact on patient-centred outcomes, the project will also undertake a health economics analysis of the impact of increasing specialist provision across the NHS in order to deliver the vision set out by the NHS Services Seven Days a Week Forum. HiSLAC will therefore provide useful information across the NHS about the cost-effectiveness of investing in consultant and other specialist staffing in implementing the drive to 7-day service provision.

The decision on award of funding was made in September 2013 and the project launched in February 2014. This website will be updated over the coming weeks and months as the project progresses.

Due to recent bed pressures patients are often sent from the Acute Medical Unit to the wards without a consultant review, and in some cases without a registrar review.

On the wards it is 'pot luck' whether the patient is seen by a consultant the following day or a few days down the line.

Once the patient is identified under the correct team it depends on which day a consultant does their ward rounds, which means a delay up to 5-6 days.

The patient was an outlier; no one knew the patient and wanted to take any responsibility.

- Reflections of a Foundation Year 1 trainee, January 2013


For Phase 2 of HiSLAC we’ll investigate the impact of planned increases to weekend specialist intensity #7dayservices


We’re nearly at the end of Phase 1 of our #7dayservices study: developing a national map of specialist intensity in acute trusts


We're conducting 2 interlinked systematic reviews to explore the magnitude of the weekend effect & the mechanisms behind it #7dayservices


78 Acute Trusts submitted #7dayservices data for our Directorate Level Questionnaire - thank you to everyone who contributed