Last night Alexander Burnett MSP raised the debate of Improving Outcomes for People with Neurological Conditions in Parliament.
The publication of the Together for the One in Six report from the Neurological Alliance of Scotland (NAoS); this report analyses the Scottish responses (over 800) to the 2021/22 National Neurology Patient Experience Survey (known as #MyNeuroSurvey). This is the first-time neurological experiences have been collected in this way across the whole of the UK. The report notes that people living with the neurological conditions had experienced delays in the diagnosis and treatment of their conditions.
The report considers that these findings are the result of pre-existing structural problems, exacerbated by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The report further considers that the Scottish Government’s plan to implement the Strategic Framework for Action on Neurological Care and Support has been delayed, and is unlikely to have achieved its objectives by its end point in 2025.
Report findings show that:
- Nearly half of adults and over half of children experienced delays accessing a routine neurology appointment
- Five times more children were awaiting diagnosis than adults
- Delays are contributing to a mental health crisis
- 4 in 10 adults say their mental health needs are not being met ‘at all’
- Receiving a life changing diagnosis is scary, and yet a fifth of adults and a quarter of children said they received no explanation about their condition.
The report also highlights that services for children and young people with neurological conditions should also be included in future strategic work. It concludes that there is a lack of data around the wider prevalence of neurological conditions and is likely that the statistic of one in six may be grossly underestimated. The report appeals to Scottish Government that it must now address this and begin work to develop a comprehensive plan that ensures Scotland has the workforce and resources to support people with neurological conditions now and deliver better outcomes for them in the future.
The full debate can be viewed on Scottish Parliament TV here.
The Oxygen Works are proud members of the Neurological Alliance of Scotland and are delighted to have CEO Leigh-Ann Little sitting on the Executive of the NAoS.