The proportion of people seen by a physiotherapist within 72 hours of a stroke has risen from 92 per cent to 96 per cent over the past three years, says the Welsh government.
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Its third national stroke survey says 89 per cent of stroke patients were assessed as requiring physiotherapy and that they received this on average for 30 minutes per day.
In 2005 more than 3,000 people died from a stroke in Wales, says the report. By 2014 it had fallen by 26 per cent to 2,317 --- a reduction of 841 deaths.
‘The progress we have seen is a great tribute to the dedicated staff that work tirelessly to support patients and carers through difficult times,’ says the report.
A case study in the document covers the education and training developed to support stroke rehabilitation in Powys Health Board.
It focuses on training days delivered by a physiotherapist, speech and language therapist, an occupational therapist and a dietician. The events were designed to deliver practical training, including supporting communication, eating and drinking, and positioning and handling.
Earlier assessment of stroke patients
Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board is providing earlier assessment of stroke patients, according to another case study. This includes earlier access to physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy achieved by effective multidisciplinary working.
The document emphasises that goals, however small, are set for stroke patients. It says that this will give them a sense of focus and allow them to measure their progress.
More than 90 per cent of patients in Wales have their rehabilitation goals agreed within five days of admission.
Philippa Ford, the CSP’s public affairs and policy manager for Wales, said it was encouraging to see the improvement in physiotherapy provision identified by the latest audit.
‘The fact that there is a regular audit means that the spotlight will fall on stroke services regularly and keep them high on the political agenda,’ she said.
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