At the launch of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Acquired Brain Injury (APPG on ABI) report ‘Time for Change: Acquired Brain Injury and Neurorehabilitation’, Chris Bryant, MP and Chair of the APPG states that:
“Acquired Brain Injury is an invisible epidemic, and we need to ensure that the Neurorehabilitation services required following a brain injury are ‘fit for purpose’ throughout the UK.”
The Time for Change report:
- Outlines that early access to specialist and/or community Neurorehabilitation are critical components of the ABI pathway and this can avoid or minimise disability and optimise recovery.
- Identifies the need for Rehabilitation Prescriptions for all brain injury survivors, these document the individual’s Neurorehabilitation needs and optimise access to services along the care pathway following discharge from acute care
- Recommends cooperation between key government departments (i.e. the Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Work and Pensions) is required to review funding for in-patient and community Neurorehabilitation services
- Reviews the implications for children and young people with ABI when most of their Neurorehabilitation takes place in the education system
- Discusses the high incidence of ABI amongst offenders and the impact of Neurorehabilitation on behavioural change and reoffending
- Outlines the current issues in sport-related concussion, as well as the need for an improved welfare system that is easily accessible
The report covers Neurorehabilitation in depth with the executive summary stating
“Neurorehabilitation improves functional independence and reduces the burden on carers, as well as improving the rates of return to work and productivity for those who are able.”
The report also states
“Neurorehabilitation is one of the most cost-effective interventions available to the NHS.”
The Neurorehabilitation chapter within the report includes an overview, explores the delivery of Neurorehabilitation across the country and explores in detail; Rehabilitation prescriptions and how they improve communication and service access for individuals with an ABI.
The report discusses Key issues and recommendations for Neurorehabilitation which are outlined below.
Neurorehabilitation: Key Issues
- Early access to neurorehabilitation is imperative to optimise recovery for individuals with Acquired Brain Injury
- There are large variations in the provision and access to neurorehabilitation services across the country, and a lack of neurorehabilitation personnel
- There is a lack of understanding of the role of neurorehabilitation at a national and local level, and a reluctance to fund services
- Rehabilitation Prescriptions are not made available to all individuals with an Acquired Brain Injury, and general practitioners rarely receive a copy so cannot facilitate access to neurorehabilitation services post-discharge
- Rehabilitation Prescriptions should be available to all individuals with an Acquired Brain Injury on discharge from acute care, held by the individual with copies made available to the general practitioner
- A national review of neurorehabilitation is required to ensure service provision is adequate and consistent throughout the UK
- The Government should collate reliable statistics for the number of individuals presenting at Accident and Emergency Departments with Acquired Brain Injury, and record the numbers that require and receive neurorehabilitation
- There should be a significant increase in neurorehabilitation beds and neurorehabilitation professionals so that every trauma centre has a consultant in rehabilitation medicine, and individuals with an Acquired Brain Injury have access to neurorehabilitation
- Cooperation between key government departments (i.e. the Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Work and Pensions) is required to review funding for in-patient and community neurorehabilitation services
Copies of the report can be obtained from UKABIF.
The recommendations within this report are wholeheartedly supported by Elysium Healthcare. We provide high quality specialist rehabilitation and long term complex care for people with neurological illnesses, acquired brain injuries and spinal cord injuries.
We work with residents and their families/carers to help them to achieve their personal goals and the best quality of life possible in a caring, supportive and homely environment.
We strongly believe that:
In line with the report there should be a significant increase in neurorehabilitation beds and neurorehabilitation professionals, to ensure that individuals with an Acquired Brain Injury have access to high quality efficient and effective neurorehabilitation to enable them to reach and if possible exceed their personal goals. That is why we are continuing to expand our neurorehabilitation services across the country to ensure services are available and accessible to those who require them.
The report identifies that there is a limited provision in the North East – an issue we have also identified and taken steps to address this provision by opening a brand new neurorehabilitation centre in Middlesbrough – The Bridge.
Learn more about The Bridge here.