Parkinson’s UK have produced a comprehensive new report which shows that Parkinson’s services in Scotland are suffering due to chronic capacity issues which are affecting our NHS. Jackie Baillie has called on the Scottish Government to implement the reports recommendations.

There are 12,400 people in Scotland currently diagnosed with Parkinson’s and it is expected that a further 30 people each week will be diagnosed in 2019.

The report reveals that around one in ten consultant posts in neurology and medicine for older people, the consultants who treat Parkinson’s patients, are unfilled. It also shows that between September 2017 and September 2018 only two NHS Board’s managed to meet the 12 week target time, for patients to be seen by a consultant following referral, at any point. And in July 2018 it took almost 33 weeks for 95% of people to see a neurologist in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

The report makes 13 recommendations includingcalling on the Scottish Government and NHS Boards:
– to plan and resource Parkinson’s services to meet the needs of the growing Parkinson’s population;
– to recognise the diversity of Parkinson’s symptoms, include mental health professionals in Parkinson’s multi-disciplinary teams and provide clear pathways for mental health support for people with Parkinson’s;
– to develop and implement technology that can support people with Parkinson’s, unpaid carers and families; and
– to support the inclusion of basic information about Parkinson’s in mandatory training modules for social care workers and promote Parkinson’s education and training among staff.

Jackie said:

“Parkinson’s UK and Parkinson’s organisations across the country, including in Helensburgh and the Vale of Leven, provide vital support services for people with Parkinson’s and their families.

“It is clear that people with Parkinson’s are being adversely impacted by lengthy waiting times which are caused by the chronic underfunding of our NHS.

“People with Parkinson’s deserve so much better.

“I would urge the Scottish Government to develop a strategy for Parkinson’s and ensure that the recommendations made by Parkinson’s UK are implemented.”

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