We are a preferred NHS provider of echocardiogram services in the South West, fulfilling the outpatient demand for local hospitals, and GP Direct Access referrals across Devon and Cornwall.


Who are Ultracardiac?

We are a provider of NHS services to local GP surgeries and hospitals across Devon and Cornwall, offering diagnostic tests to patients in community settings and saving the need for trips into hospitals.  This benefit became even more pertinent during the pandemic, allowing essential diagnostic tests to continue whilst keeping patients safe and away from the infection hot-spots

We are proud of the pivotal  role we have played in improving the waiting list position since we started back in 2017, and are even more proud of the trusted relationship we have since cultivated with NHS stakeholders in our region.

Our workforce has grown substantially, and we have a fantastic, highly professional team of experienced echocardiographers and a wonderfully friendly admin team on hand to help make your experience as straightforward and seamless as possible. We have several clinics across Devon & Cornwall, but the admin team and main office is based at our centrally located flagship site – Tor View Clinical Rooms – in Plymouth.

What should I expect for my appointment?

If you have been referred to us for an echocardiogram (ultrasound scan of your heart) then you will receive a letter from us within a few days inviting you to attend an appointment at one of our clinics. We do our best to choose the location closest to you within an appropriate timeframe – unfortunately there are certain restrictions on where we can see you depending on who has made the referral.

When you arrive, your echocardiographer will call you through and you will need to undress from your waist and above. The scan involves some cold gel on your chest, and using an ultrasound probe, we will take some photos, videos and measurements of your heart, over the course of around 20 minutes. Afterwards, you are free to get dressed and leave, and we will write up a report that summarises our assessment.

What happens with my results?

Your results are peer reviewed, meaning that another experienced echocardiographer will check the images and report to make sure that they agree with the findings. The results are then sent back to the clinician who referred you the next working day. It usually takes a few weeks for the referring doctor to review the results, and the next steps in your care are managed by them. We only provide the test and don’t have any part in the onward management of your care. If you are wishing to find out your results, you will need to speak with the doctor who referred you.

Why might I be referred for an echocardiogram?

There are many reasons why you may be referred for an echocardiogram. GPs can refer under a certain criteria, or it may be that a doctor at the hospital has referred you instead. These reasons include:

·       You may be breathless, or have a build-up of fluid

·       To help assess how well your heart is pumping (function)

·       To help assess the cause of a heart murmur

·       To help assess how well the valves in your heart are working

·       You may have an irregular heart rhythm, such as atrial fibrillation (AF)

·       To help assess the size of the chambers, or muscle thickness in your heart

·       You may have a family history of cardiac conditions

If you have any questions at all regarding your NHS referral, then please do not hesitate to contact a member of our friendly team who will be glad to assist you.