Health Minister launches Neurological Conditions Delivery Plan
Health Minister Mark Drakeford has launched a plan setting out new commitments to help people with neurological conditions
Approximately 500,000 people in Wales are affected by a neurological condition, which may be caused by damage to the brain, spinal column or nerves as a result of illness or injury.
The Welsh Government wants to ensure those affected have timely access to high-quality care, which is joined up with social services where appropriate, irrespective of where they live and how these services are delivered.
The Neurological Conditions Delivery Plan provides a framework for action by health boards and their partners. It sets out the Welsh Government’s expectations for the planning and delivery of person-centred care and focuses on meeting population need, tackling variation in access to services and reducing inequalities across seven themes:
- Raising awareness of neurological conditions
- Timely diagnosis of neurological conditions
- Fast and effective care
- Living with a neurological condition
- Children and young people
- Improving information
- Targeting research
Launching the plan at the Association of British Neurologists Annual Meeting in the Millennium Centre, Health Minister Mark Drakeford said:
“Neurological conditions have a very serious and lasting impact on the lives of individuals and their families.
“Raising awareness among the public and clinicians is very important as all too often symptoms of these conditions can be misunderstood.
“This plan provides the necessary guidance and clarifies required standards. We must provide excellent care, whether that is through timely diagnosis, appropriate treatment or continuing support.
“I believe we can achieve high-quality prudent care for people with a range of neurological conditions, based on a partnership between the NHS and the users. The partnership will recognise and jointly put to work the expertise of both to bring about improvement individually and collectively.
“The NHS must also work with partner organisations in the public and voluntary sector. By focusing on quality and individual’s experiences we will deliver the improvements we all want to achieve.”
Health boards will now develop and implement their own plans to deliver well co-ordinated services for patients. Specialised care needs to be well connected to local services, providing better patient experience and outcomes. In particular, it is essential that NHS and its partners focus on meeting population needs, reducing inequalities in health and variation in access to services across Wales.
This document - one of a suite of national service delivery plans – is designed to develop and improve services for people with neurological conditions. It requires the NHS and its partners to:
- Carry out local population needs assessments
- Analyse the gap between current provision and the requirements in this plan
- Plan and take action to close that gap
- Demonstrate, through regular reporting, improved outcomes for patients, with an emphasis on reducing health inequalities
The NHS, working with its partners, must deliver the new commitments to the population of Wales by 2017.
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