The importance of community rehabilitation

Rehabilitation and engagement in activity are now widely recognized as critical components of long-term mental and physical health, and this is reflected in policy commitments across the UK as part of improvements to community and primary care

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These commitments are set out in the NHS Long Term Plan for England, 'A Healthier Wales', ‘A Health and Care Delivery Plan in Scotland’ and the ‘Transformation Programme in Northern Ireland’.

However, access to rehabilitation services continues to be a significant barrier for many of the people who could most benefit from them. Those recovering from injury, or acute conditions or living with long term conditions, often struggle to access the services they need. These gaps are particularly evident outside of acute hospital settings. That is, services in community hospitals and intermediate care, in people’s homes and for residents in care homes. Expanding access to quality rehabilitation, delivered in community settings, therefore has a key role to play.

The CSP will work with members and key stakeholder organisations to make the case for improved access and increased capacity for community rehabilitation. We want to ensure that policy commitments and new resources are translated into effective action. Delivering these changes will take several years and need our sustained and collective commitment. We are at the start of that journey.

In year 1, we will:

  • Establish an alliance of organisations to work together on a call to action for policymakers on investment and planning of rehabilitation services and development of services to be fit for the future 
  • Set up hip fracture networks charged with driving up quality across the whole hip fracture pathway
  • Support scaling up pulmonary rehab
  • Create physiotherapy standards for community rehabilitation
  • Influence planning and commissioning of community rehabilitation

  • Promote ideas for how community rehabilitation can change to be fit for the future, including where the Covid-19 pandemic has been a catalyst for change and acceleration. 

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