The Welsh Government has made bold new commitments to rehabilitation with the publication of its Programme for transforming and modernising planned care and reducing waiting lists in Wales.
In the plan, the Welsh Government says it will 'introduce integrated models of prehabilitation and rehabilitation as standard elements of all pathways' and 'will develop and embed a standard prehabilitation approach to improve outcomes'.
It states that the plan will encourage health and social care organisations to focus on:
- transforming outpatient services
- prioritising diagnostic services
- early diagnosis and treatment of suspected cancer patients
- patient prioritisation to minimise health inequalities
- those waiting a long time
- building sustainable planned care capacity
- improving communication and support
Reacting to the rehab and prehab ambitions in the plan, Calum Higgins, CSP public affairs and policy manager for Wales, said: 'We welcome the recovery plan and the recognition that rehab is vital in supporting, and avoiding, people waiting longer due to the impact of the pandemic.
'It's clear that there are challenges ahead and that investment in rehab services is key to the NHS's recovery. Having these new commitments at the highest level means the investment in rehab and prehab across the pathways should be followed through by funding at a health board level.'
In the lead up to the plan's launch, the CSP met with the minister for health, Eluned Morgan MS, and impressed upon her the vital importance that rehab must play in planning the NHS's pandemic recovery.
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