Stroke survivors entering care homes are missing out on crucial rehabilitation and being ‘written off’, the Stroke Association and Chartered Society of Physiotherapy warn.
A survey for the two organisations found that three in five care homes are not following NICE guidelines that the needs of a stroke survivor must be assessed by a specialist within 72 hours of admission.
Around 8,000 people are discharged from hospital to a care home after a stroke every year. Without specialist assessments many of them will not get access to the therapies they need. A report from the Centre for Policy on Ageing says that stroke is the second most common neurological condition among care home residents, after dementia.
Patrick Olszowski, Stroke Association’s head of policy and campaigns said: “Stroke survivors in care homes are frequently good candidates for rehabilitation. Yet all too often they’re not getting services vital to their recovery and quality of life because they are not properly assessed.
“At present neither the health system nor care homes are clear as to whose responsibility it is to ensure these assessments happen. People in care homes are in the greatest need of support, services like physiotherapy can make a world of difference. We are urging those who plan and provide health and care to take action and ensure stroke survivors are assessed and their needs met. Having a stroke is bad enough, being written off is worse.”