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Found 61 results
  1. News Article
    The lives of thousands of blind and partially sighted people are being put at risk by delays in vital care that they have a legal right to after being assessed as visually impaired, according to a report. More than a quarter of English councils are leaving people who have just been diagnosed as blind waiting more than a year for vision rehabilitation assessments and potentially life-saving support, the report by the RNIB revealed. It cited the example of one person who died while waiting for council help. The Guardian can reveal that the case involved a woman from Church Stretton in Shropshire who had been waiting 18 months for an assessment when she tripped on a pothole and died later from head injuries. She had been trying to teach herself how to use a white cane, without any support or training, despite getting a certificate of visual impairment. Councils are obliged to provide such help for those coping with a recent visual impairment under the 2014 Care Act. The support involves helping people cope practically and mentally with visual impairment at a critical time after a diagnosis. The social care ombudsman recommends that councils should provide these services within 28 days of someone receiving a certificate of visual impairment. But the RNIB report, which is based on freedom of information requests to councils in England, found that 86% were missing this 28-day deadline. The report, Out of sight – The hidden scandal of vision rehabilitation warned that the delays uncovered in the figures were dangerous. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 10 March 2024
  2. Content Article
    Thousands of people with sight loss remain 'Out of Sight' in the hidden scandal of vision rehabilitation. Life changes after sight loss, sometimes overnight, often in dramatic ways. Done well, vision rehabilitation equips people with new ways to stay independent: to get out and about, adapt their work, shop and enjoy hobbies. However, the reality is stark. 86% of local authorities in England miss the 28-day recommended deadline to explore a person’s needs. Threadbare services mean people wait without the support they’re entitled to, at risk of physical accidents and injuries as well as mental health crises. The RNIB are calling on all UK political parties to commit to ensuring blind and partially sighted people get the support they need, when they need it.
  3. Content Article
    The aim of this study, published in the BMJ, was to evaluate whether a structured online supervised group physical and mental health rehabilitation programme can improve health related quality of life compared with usual care in adults with Long Covid.  Best practice usual care was a single online session of advice and support with a trained practitioner. The REGAIN intervention was delivered online over eight weeks and consisted of weekly home based, live, supervised, group exercise and psychological support sessions. The authors concluded that in adults with Long Covid, an online, home based, supervised, group physical and mental health rehabilitation programme was clinically effective at improving health related quality of life at 3 and 12 months compared with usual care.
  4. News Article
    The failure of trusts to offer stroke patients the level of rehab required by standards introduced 10 years ago has not prevented the publication of new guidance which demands even higher performance. New guidance has been issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) which says recovering stroke patients should receive therapy for at least three hours a day, five days each week. Performance against this standard is not yet measured, but figures analysed by HSJ show nearly all units treating stroke patients are falling well short of the previous NICE standard issued in 2013. This required a much less ambitious 45 minutes per day. The figures suggest it is inconceivable the NHS will meet the new NICE rehab requirements in the near future. When they were launched, NICE said: “It shouldn’t be underestimated how important it is for people who have been left with disabilities following a stroke to be given the opportunity to benefit from the intensity and duration of rehabilitation therapies outlined in this updated guideline.” But Chartered Society of Physiotherapy chief executive Karen Middleton said there was no funding for physios to work on rehab, despite increases in staff supply. “Funding that we know is already limited is being prioritised to other things rather than into rehab,” she said. Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 29 November 2023
  5. Content Article
    Good practice guidance for integrated care boards (commissioners and providers) produced by NHS England. This community rehabilitation and reablement model, published alongside the intermediate care framework, aims to ensure that the individual (and their families) is at the centre of discussions and that any transition points will be as seamless as possible.
  6. News Article
    Extra beds squeezed into hospitals as part of winter planning are crowding out space for rehab, pushing up length of stay and knock-on costs, and increasing the chance of readmission, NHS leaders have been warned. Systems and trusts were encouraged to staff thousands of additional ward beds in the run-up to last winter to try to ease emergency care pressures, and government and NHS England have since asked for many of them to be kept open through the year. However, many of the additional beds are not in proper ward spaces, instead being located in gyms and other areas used for physiotherapy and other rehab. This followed on from some rehab areas already being lost during the pandemic, to be used for beds or storage. NHSE has sent out a warning about the issue, following a commitment by ministers earlier this year. However, senior figures in physio and older people’s care remain concerned the spaces will not be restored without checks and enforcement, especially as acute trusts remain under pressure to increase general bed space.
  7. Content Article
    Nicole McCarthy tells us about the Royal College of Psychiatrists' Quality Network for Inpatient Working Age Mental Health Services (QNWA), how it supports and engages mental health inpatient wards in a process of quality improvement, its accreditation and developmental processes and how you can become a member.
  8. News Article
    Millions of people in the UK are suffering poor health because they miss out on vital rehabilitation after strokes, heart attacks and cancer, which in turn is also heaping further pressure on the NHS, a damning report warns. Physiotherapists say some groups of patients are particularly badly affected. Without access to these services, many patients desperately trying to recover from illness became “stuck in a downward spiral”, they said, with some developing other health conditions as a result. The new report by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) says millions of people in marginalised communities, including those from ethnic minorities, are not only more likely to live shorter lives, but also spend a greater proportion of their lives struggling with health difficulties. Vital services that could tackle those inequities are either unavailable or poorly equipped to meet their needs, the report warns, adding that “some communities face particular barriers”. Prof Karen Middleton, the chief executive of the CSP, said: “Rehabilitation services have been under-resourced for decades and were not designed coherently in the first place. This has exacerbated poor health outcomes, particularly for people from marginalised groups. “It’s not only the individual who suffers. Without adequate access to rehabilitation, health conditions worsen to the point where more and more pressure is eventually piled on struggling local health systems and other public services. “We desperately need a modernised recovery and rehabilitation service that adequately supports patients following a health crisis and prevents other conditions developing.” Read full story Source: The Guardian, 21 September 2022
  9. Content Article
    The COVID-19 Recovery Committee has published its report on Long Covid and post-Covid syndrome, urging the Scottish Government to take action to address the stigma surrounding the condition and improve awareness among the public and healthcare professionals. The inquiry focussed on the awareness and recognition, therapy and rehabilitation, and study and research linked to Long Covid, with the Committee noting “concern” in their findings over reports of patients being unable to get the correct diagnosis and the lack of treatment for common conditions associated with the condition. The Committee said it was “deeply saddened” to learn about the stigma faced by those with lived and living experience of Long Covid, and the report highlights the impact that the lack of awareness and recognition of Long Covid can have on those with the condition.
  10. Content Article
    In this blog, published by the World Health Organization, we hear about one family's experience of long Covid. Claire Hastie and her children are yet to recover and continue to experience numerous debilitating symptoms that prevent them from taking part in their pre-covid occupations.  WHO/Europe has also been working with patient groups to define priority areas where action is needed. It is now calling upon governments and authorities to focus attention on long COVID and its sufferers through greater: recognition: all services must be adequately equipped, and no patient should be left alone or have to struggle to navigate through a system that is not prepared to, or not capable of, recognizing this very debilitating condition;  research and reporting: data gathering and reporting of cases, and well-coordinated research with full participation of patients, are needed to advance understanding of the prevalence, causes and costs of long COVID; and  rehabilitation: this cost-effective intervention is an investment in building back healthy and productive societies.
  11. Content Article
    The occupational therapy (OT) workforce is under huge pressure. Increased demand coupled with workforce shortages is challenging OTs’ capacity to provide essential support to people whose lives are impacted by long term health conditions and disability. In November 2022, the Royal College of Occupational Therapists surveyed OT practitioners across the UK about the workplace issues they’re facing now, and how these affect the services they deliver to the public. They also asked how practitioners are impacted personally, including whether they intend to continue working as OTs. The challenges shared by over 2,600 respondents have significant implications for the resilience of the current and future OT workforce, and the people who use OT services.
  12. News Article
    In the largest independent randomized controlled trial (RCT) of its type, a multimodal digital therapy program for patients with non-specific chronic low back pain has outperformed standard-of-care treatment across all medical outcomes. Results of the study, published in the Journal of Pain Research, show that patients using Kaia, the back pain management app developed by leading digital therapeutics company Kaia Health, reduced pain levels, anxiety, depression, stress, and improved wellbeing and body functionality significantly more compared to standard-of-care treatments, e.g. pain killers, surgeries, physical therapy. “This large-scale study demonstrates the significant benefits for people managing low back pain when using Kaia to deliver a multimodal treatment through a digital device, such as a smartphone,” says Thomas R. Toelle, M.D., Ph.D., Head of the Pain Center of the Technical University Munich, Germany. “These results add to the growing body of medical evidence that supports the use of digital multimodal treatments for chronic conditions, such as back pain.” Low back pain is one of the leading causes of global disability, with an enormous cost for healthcare systems worldwide. 1,2 According to a 2018 report on the impact of musculoskeletal pain on employers, chronic pain, including back pain, accounts for 188.7 million lost work days, and $62,4 billion in lost productivity cost.3 Kaia is an app-based, multimodal digital therapy program for chronic back pain, which focuses on Physical therapy, Relaxation exercises, and Medical education.
  13. News Article
    Demand for oxygen from COVID-19 patients recovering at home is set to place the NHS under strain, the health service has warned. NHS England has issued guidance to out-of-hospital health providers on the extra demands likely to be placed on them given the number of people recovering after a hospital stay with the coronavirus. It warns that the provision from its home oxygen services and community respiratory teams across the NHS is expected to be an issue as the scale of demand increases. Andrew Whittamore, a practising GP and clinical lead for the Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation partnership, said concerns about the potential for hospitals to be overwhelmed in the early part of the pandemic had led to community oxygen teams being primed to take on more patients – but he described that ramping up as “a short-term fix”. “We don’t know how long people are going to need oxygen or other services for,” he said. “There are definitely going to be extra patients added on to our community teams’ workloads.” The Taskforce for Lung Health – of which the British Lung Foundation is a member – has raised particular concerns about access to pulmonary rehabilitation. An education- and exercise-based treatment, which is proven to be more effective for lung patients than many drug-based treatments, and face-to-face classes have been suspended during the pandemic. It may be that such treatment would also be helpful for some patients recovering from COVID-19. Jackie Eagleton, policy officer at the British Lung Foundation, said there had been issues with access to pulmonary rehabilitation for a long time, but the need to offer this form of support to people with lung conditions “has never been more pressing than it is now”. Read full story Source: The Independent, 16 June 2020
  14. News Article
    The health service will face a “tsunami” of coronavirus survivors discharged from hospitals needing long-term physical and mental support that the NHS will struggle to provide, The Independent has been told. Coronavirus can leave patients with lasting physical damage and scarring to their lungs, meaning many could struggle to breathe and move around as well as they did before – in some cases permanently. Patients admitted to intensive care can also suffer physical effects of being paralysed weeks and almost half who are ventilated with a tube in their windpipe will experience a form of delirium that can include terrifying hallucinations and leave survivors with lasting mental problems including post-traumatic stress. Experts have warned a long-term lack of funding of NHS rehabilitation services and post-discharge care for ITU patients means the health service will struggle to help the thousands of patients who beat the virus but face a long road to recovery. Read full story Source: 3 May 2020
  15. Content Article
    This report was undertaken by the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA), the University of Reading and the University of Buckingham to examine the mental health of spinal cord injured (SCI) people, and to identify gaps in mental health support for them and their unpaid carers in the UK. More than 300 members shared their views on the mental health support they receive, with a focus on depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. A further 16 unpaid carers - partners and parents - took part in interviews to gain a full picture of the services received.  
  16. Content Article
    This manifesto was created by the Community Rehabilitation Alliance, a collective of 50 charities, trade unions and professional bodies coming together to call on all political parties to ensure there is equal access to high quality community rehabilitation services for all patients.
  17. Content Article
    These information sheets by World Physiotherapy, the global body for physiotherapy member organisations, were produced for World Physiotherapy Day 2021, which focused on the role of physiotherapists in treating and managing people affected by Long Covid. Topics include: What is Long Covid? Rehabilitation and Long Covid Fatigue and post-exertional symptom exacerbation How to use pacing with your physiotherapist Breathing exercises The information sheets are also available in a variety of other languages.
  18. Content Article
    In a new Lancet Respiratory Medicine Series about Long Covid, Sally J Singh and colleagues discuss the origins of respiratory sequelae and consider the promise of adapted pulmonary rehabilitation programmes and physiotherapy techniques for breathing management. Pratik Pandharipande and colleagues review the epidemiology and pathophysiology of neuropsychological sequelae of COVID-19-related critical illness, highlighting the combined threat of long COVID and post-intensive care syndrome (PICS), and outline potential mitigation strategies. Finally, Matteo Parotto and colleagues discuss pathophysiological mechanisms of diverse, multisystem sequelae in adult survivors of critical illness, including longitudinal effects of endothelial and immune system dysfunction, and consider the challenges of providing appropriate care and support for patients.
  19. News Article
    Suicidal thoughts are three times as common in those living with a spinal cord injury in the UK, according to new research And yet, it’s estimated that only one third of people living with a spinal cord injury (SCI) are getting access to mental health support, and of those, 68% do not feel that support services available are able to meet their needs. These alarming statistics are taken from a new report, ‘It’s not just physical’ which was presented to parliament yesterday (17 November). The report shines a light on the mental health problems faced by people with spinal cord injuries in the UK today. It's calling on the NHS, government and other health policy makers to provide better mental health support services for people with spinal cord injuries – and their unpaid carers – as a matter of urgency. Nik Hartley, Spinal Injuries Association CEO said: “We are at risk of failing thousands of people in the UK living with a spinal cord injury. Our new report highlights that psychological damage caused by a SCI is, at best, considered as an afterthought, and at worst, completely ignored by the medical profession. We need urgent action and for services to be sufficiently specialised to support the thousands of people living with this type of injury before it is too late.” Read full story Source: Spinal Injuries Association, 17 November 2021
  20. Content Article
    Poster from World Physiotherapy for World Physiotherapy Day 2021 highlighting the symptoms of Long Covid similar to ME/chronic fatigue syndrome which can worsen with exertion.
  21. Content Article
    Patients with head and neck cancer may be required to travel significant distances for treatment, follow up and rehabilitation. This article in thr journal Cancer Nursing Practice presents findings from an evaluation of a pilot head and neck cancer service redesign in Thames Valley Cancer Alliance to enable patients from Swindon and Wiltshire to receive follow up and rehabilitation closer to home. The evaluation identified a decrease in overall outpatient visit time for these patients, resulting in reduced travel costs and improved quality of life.
  22. Content Article
    The gap in healthy life expectancy is being driven by the increasing numbers of people managing a long-term condition (LTC) and, increasingly more than one – known as multi-morbidity. This situation affects a higher proportion of the population facing systemic discrimination and marginalisation, and those experiencing higher levels of deprivation. This report from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy raises awareness of health inequities in rehabilitation and recovery services across the UK
  23. Content Article
    This NHS document outlines new guidance on accessing and referring into the digital COVID-19 rehabilitation programme, Your COVID Recovery.
  24. Content Article
    The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), is developing the COVID-19 guideline: management of the long-term effects of COVID-19. The final scoping document and associated project papers are now available.
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