NHS letting down stroke patients with a ‘postcode lottery rehabilitation’

Patients are failing to recover from a stroke or a heart attack after being discharged from hospitals as the NHS offers too little rehabilitation, a report from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), Royal College of Occupational Therapists and the charity Sue Ryder warns.

According to the report, “ patchy provision” means those with arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and other long- term conditions also miss out on care that can make a huge difference to their and quality of life.

The report detailed a “postcode lottery” in the availability of community rehabilitation in England, which has “devastating consequences” for patients who have just been treated in hospital or have recently been diagnosed with a serious illness, including cancer.

Long delays and shortages in the quest for help are leaving many being let down by the NHS when they need help to get their lives back on track, the report said. 

In a survey of 1,002 people who have a long-term health condition, of the 71% of patients who felt they received too little rehabilitation, 44% said they felt “abandoned by the system” as the NHS did not meet their needs. 

The organisations behind the report claim that NHS bosses are breaching the health service’s own constitution by not ensuring that rehabilitation will be available everywhere.

Full story in The Guardian, 26 February 2020