Your comments: 2 August 2017

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Air your views

NHS England has announced a consultation on restricting the prescribing of ‘low value’ treatments. While many reports of that announcement focused on homeopathy, the consultation covers much more, including 17 other specific treatments recommended for restriction. It also includes an apparent intent to remove NHS funding for prescriptions of remedies that are otherwise available over the counter, such as those for acute pain. This has the potential to affect many of the people physiotherapists support. 
While some treatments are available to purchase over the counter, that does not mean everyone can afford them. There will be distinct categories of people who rely on NHS funding for prescriptions of these remedies. Many people need such treatments – not for short episodes of minor illness, 
but for treating persistent secondary problems that may be caused by other chronic conditions.
Stopping such prescriptions would break with the principle of an NHS ‘free at the point of use’ and would create a system where access to treatments is based on a person’s ability to pay. 
I would encourage the CSP to engage with NHS England and Frontline readers to air their views via the consultation.  See here.
  • Don Redding, director of policy, National Voices, the coalition of health and care charities. 

Blog appeal

I was impressed by Katrina Kennedy’s blogs from the World Confederation for Physical Therapy. See here
One point particularly struck me: that no one with a disability survived the Japanese tsunami or made it out alive from Syria. Katrina is absolutely right, physios are in the perfect position to support people  in difficult situations and emergency evacuations.
Applying this to my role made me think not only of the physical barriers caused by physical disability, but the barriers we erect by not educating clients on evacuation planning and escape.
The government produces guidance on what to do in a terror attack (run, hide, tell), but I couldn’t find any resources in an easy-read format. Our team regularly gives ‘keep safe’ advice, particularly for clients who may be most vulnerable to cold calling, accidental fires, financial abuse or even falls. But I’ve not talked about emergency evacuation or plans specific to someone’s disability. 
  • Carrie Clarke, clinical specialist physiotherapist, Dorset HealthCare University NHS Trust. 

Parkinson’s update              

The Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Neurology (ACPIN) welcomes the updated guideline on Parkinson’s from the National Institute for Care Excellence (page 10). The new NICE guidance supports intensive specialist and experienced neuro physiotherapy with patients as early as at the point of diagnosis. This moves the focus to younger working age people.
We look forward to developing and delivering, new training opportunities for our members to help put this important guidance into clinical practice. ACPIN is ready to work with Parkinson’s charities, higher education institutions, service providers and professional groups, including the CSP, to fulfil this need.
  • Jakko Brouwers, honorary chair, ACPIN
Frontline and various

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