Poor services for neurology despite increase in spending
Published date: 16 Dec 2011 at 11:22AM
Despite a £0.8billion increase in spending for neurological services from 2006-2010, there’s no record of how this money has benefited patients, a National Audit Office report published today, Friday 16 December, has found.
We’ve joined forces with Parkinson’s UK, Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA), and the Neurological Alliance to urge the Government to create a targeted and properly resourced national outcomes strategy for neurological conditions. This would help to:
- Explain what support, information and choices will be given to people with neurological conditions
- Set out what support the Government will provide to help neurological services deliver high quality outcomes
- Show what action needs to be taken to ensure people can access high quality services
- Ensure money is being spent appropriately while sending a clear signal that neurological services must be seen as a priority
While the report found there have been some improvements in neurology services there are still significant problems including-
- Long delays in receiving a diagnosis
- Unnecessary and expensive emergency admissions
- Lack of access to information
- Care is fragmented and poorly coordinated
The report also exposed that billions of pounds have been wasted by the Department of Health through people with neurological conditions, including MS, being unnecessarily admitted to hospital.
Simon Gillespie, Chief Executive of the MS Society comments:
“Every time a person is admitted to A&E because of their MS, the health and social care system has failed. When people with MS are properly supported in managing their condition, there should be no reason for unplanned admissions, which cost both patients and the NHS dearly.
“MS specialist nurses play a critical role in providing this support and coordinating care, but with one MS nurse to every 454 people, these posts are sadly rare and many are at threat due to short-sighted budget cuts.”
We will be giving evidence to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Wednesday 18 January. Look on our campaigns’ pages for further details and to find out how you can attend the session.
“Every time a person is admitted to A&E because of their MS, the health and social care system has failed. When people with MS are properly supported in managing their condition, there should be no reason for unplanned admissions, which cost both patients and the NHS dearly."Simon Gillespie, Chief Executive of the MS Society