Listening to your experience
Having a stroke is likened to an earthquake in the brain. It affects how we move, see, speak, feel and understand and is the third biggest killer, and the largest cause of disability, in the UK.
Having urgent access to scans, blood-clot busting drugs and specialist after care 24/7 is vital – the sooner a patient receives treatment the less damage is likely to happen.
Each year in Somerset, over 1,000 patients experience a stroke. We want to improve the standard of our services for our stroke patients from good to excellent to ensure that our stroke patients have more of a chance of leading the same life as before, and less chance of having another stroke.
What we are doing to improve stroke services
Over the past two years a network of stroke specialists from the acute hospitals, community services and local voluntary sector has been set up to improve stroke services across the county.
In 2012 we convened an expert panel, including patients, to support our decision process chaired by Professor Sir Roger Boyle, a national stroke expert. As part of this review we spoke to patients, their families and carers and key voluntary groups that support stroke patients in the area.
The review included a proposal to create a single, 24 hour hyper acute stroke centre at Taunton’s Musgrove Park Hospital, together with investing in improved rehabilitation services in the community. Read the review here
The Stroke Association supported the panel recommendation to base the acute unit in Musgrove Park.
Somerset CCG is now exploring whether a single or a split site hyper acute stroke service creates the optimum outcome for our stroke patients and implications upon other supporting services. We are now preparing a full business case to present all the information required to make a decision.
This will be subject to consideration by Somerset County Council’s Health and Wellbeing Board and its Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Somerset Healthwatch, before returning to members of Somerset CCG’s Governing Body for a decision in June 2014. A period of public consultation will then be announced, depending on their decision, and the public will be invited to give their views.
If you would like to find out more, or wish to tell us your experience and views, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Somerset Stroke Services at:
Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group
Tel: 01935 384000