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"Case for Change" for specialist vascular services

User AvatarPosted by Hayley Smith at 01/03/2016 14:25:53

Why is NHS England reviewing specialist vascular services in Kent and Medway?

NHS England South (South East) commission (plan and pay for) specialised treatment in Kent and Medway, Surrey and Sussex. They are leading a review to look at this small but very important part of specialised services in Kent and Medway.Vascular services are a specialised area of healthcare which, evidence has shown, will benefit from organisation into larger centres covering a population that is big enough for there to be significant volumes of activity in all areas of service, with a robustly staffed workforce able to deliver services 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year.

NHS England have published a Case for Change in regards to vascular services in Kent and Medway and will now look at the options for specialist vascular services in the future and consider how they address the issues identified in this case for change. They will work alongside the public and key stakeholders to appraise the options and recommend a preferred option for the model of care for the future. This will be the option which can best ensure quality, safe and sustainable specialist vascular services for the people of Kent and Medway.

What do local people say?

Ten listening events have been held across Kent and Medway to share the case for change with the public, patients and carers. Overall, participants reported a positive experience of vascular services both in Kent and Medway and in London.

The attendees recognised the Case for ChangeThey said their priorities for vascular inpatient services are:

  • The ability to make choices, but there are a lot of factors which will influence that choice, so you need good information to help you decide;
  • Information and communication, particularly for anxious family and carers;
  • The need for high calibre staff with specialist skills and capacity to deliver the service 24/7. The best treatment possible as quickly as possible;
  • Speedy access in an emergency situation, and smooth access for elective care – improved appointment systems;
  • A strong, consultant team with the relevant support staff;
  • The need for support, particularly following amputations, and to know what assistance is available including care in the wider community when people return home;
  • Joined up working between services and disciplines, working within a clinical network, including improving the ability to recognise vascular disease.

Participants felt that having access to a specialist vascular team or centre was most important and reassuring in a life threatening situation, and having good access to such a service in Kent and Medway was vital.

You can view the Case for Change for Vascular Services in Kent and Medway on the NHS England website. If you would like to provide any feedback or would like more information please contact the programme lead, Oena Windibank at Oena.windibank1@nhs.net