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Patients 'face barriers' to illness and injury recovery

26 October 2017 09:11

The CPS is calling for improvements to access of rehabilitation services

The CPS is calling for improvements to access of rehabilitation services

Ineffective rehabilitation services act as "considerable barriers" to illness and injury recovery, Britain's chief physiotherapists have warned.

According to the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), health trusts are dropping the ball as soon as patients are discharged from hospital.

A collaborative of health organisations, including the CSP, are urging the Health Select Committee to open an inquiry into the accessibility of community-based rehabilitation services.

Prof Karen Middleton, chief executive of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, said: "The NHS does truly extraordinary things to keep people alive but then too often drops the ball when a person leaves hospital.

"This is grossly unfair on the patient, who has survived a traumatic ordeal only to discover that they face considerable barriers to making the fullest recovery possible."

'Postcode lottery'

High-quality rehabilitation services are vital in patients' recoveries and the regaining of their independence, the CSP says.

However, it adds the NHS is wasting the lives it saves by not providing effective rehabilitation treatment after injury.

Location plays a big part in the provision of services, with some areas having better provisions than others, the body warns.

An inquiry would address disparities in rehabilitation services and improve after care for patients who leave hospital after illness or injury

A campaign for change

The collaboration is campaigning to improve access and consistency of rehabilitation services across the UK.

The CPS warns that lives saved by the NHS are being wasted because patients are not able to access high-quality rehabilitation services to continue their recovery and regain their independence.

"Too many people are left facing a distressing future dependent on health and social care when access to high-quality rehab could have made an enormous difference to their life," continued Ms Middleton.

"It is a hidden scandal because it takes place in people's homes, away from the public glare which so often falls on hospital pressures."

Health complications that arise because of previous illness or injury can be treated even when overseas by taking out comprehensive medical travel insurance.