On 4 May, local council elections will be held for all Welsh and Scottish councils, and in England, 35 local council and eight mayoral elections. Election campaigns provide a great opportunity to raise awareness and to engage local candidates to pledge support to causes close to your heart. That is why the CSP is asking members and election candidates to get involved with our #Backing Rehab
CSP members and their patients know better than anyone the difference community rehabilitation makes, preventing needless disability and restoring independence. We know however that too often patients have long waits after leaving hospital or face difficulties coping with a long-term condition.
A study by the Stroke Association showed that support is determined more by postcode than need and almost half of the patients who took part in a survey (45 per cent) said they felt abandoned when they left hospital.
Community rehabilitation services can easily be forgotten as headlines are dominated by pressures in the acute sector, but services such as pulmonary rehabilitation can halve the amount of time a patient spends in hospital and reduce readmissions by a quarter.
Councillors and elected mayors have a responsibility to work locally with the NHS to ensure residents get the rehabilitation services they need. Moves towards integrated health and care systems will only increase the involvement of councillors in health services, so now is the ideal time to increase their understanding of the value of physiotherapy.
If you’re going to the polls in your area, find out how you can get involved by visiting the CSP website. Here you will also find model tweets and emails for you to use to contact your local candidate to make it as easy as possible. You can also tweet to your local candidates’ Twitter handle, as shown in the example above.
We want local candidates to commit to #Backing Rehab
through tweeting their support and signing up on the CSP website, this will help us to build relationships and highlight the need for investment in community rehabilitation services. fl
- Alice Sorby is policy and research officer at the CSP