CSP welcomes plans for rapid community response teams

The CSP has welcomed NHS England’s decision to roll out urgent community response teams, to ensure our older population is getting the right support at the right time in order to stay out of hospital.

Urgent Response Teams will provide older people with support at home and help them stay out of hospital

Work on developing the services and recruiting teams of health professionals – including physiotherapists – will begin in seven parts of the country in April, with the aim of them working in at least three areas by next winter.

Further areas across England will receive extra funding to start working to the new standards from 2021, with every part of the country covered by April 2023.

The initiative is part of the NHS England’s commitment, outlined in the Long-Term Plan, to support the ageing populations and those with complex needs. It aligns with one of the CSP’s key corporate priorities, to secure long-term investment in effective community rehabilitation for all those who need it.

CSP chief executive Karen Middleton said: ‘We welcome the roll out of rapid response teams to support our older population. Much like putting advanced practice physiotherapists in GP surgeries across the country, it enables patients to get faster access to specialist support, which not only saves time and money for the NHS, but is better for patients.’

She emphasised the need for continued investment to ensure the commitment can be met, saying: ‘With a population that is getting older, working longer and increasingly living with multiple long-term conditions, the number of physiotherapists needs to grow at a faster rate than even doctors.

‘There are plenty of suitable people wanting to train but in order to increase staffing numbers, we need the government to support further expansion of physio training and investment in the physiotherapy support workforce to meet these growing needs.’

The seven ‘accelerator sites’ are:

  • Warrington Together (Cheshire and Merseyside STP)
  • West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership (Kirklees)
  • Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland system
  • Cornwall system
  • Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire system
  • South East London system
  • Norfolk and Waveney system

Ruth ten Hove, CSP assistant director, practice and development, said, ‘It is important that CSP members in these areas get involved from this early stage in order to help shape the services and standards.’

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