A new survey of private and public sector healthcare professionals and
leading charities has revealed that current rehabilitation treatment for
people suffering serious injuries is inadequate.
The survey was taken at the recent National Rehabilitation Conference 2015,
organised by Irwin Mitchell and featuring expert speakers from the NHS, universities,
trauma centres and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.
It was universally accepted by conference participants that early rehabilitation
for serious injury victims has a profound long term effect in helping them to live -
independently and become less of a burden on the welfare system.
The survey revealed that an overwhelming majority (96%) of conference attendees
believe that the current injury rehabilitation process is inadequate, but that effective
rehabilitation can be achieved in our communities with the right support.
The conference, at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole also highlighted problems with
communication and accessibility of rehabilitation services, with half of the attendees
(52%) saying they didn’t know who to contact within the statutory services to ensure
that patients’ rehabilitation needs are met.
Past research by Irwin Mitchell has revealed a postcode lottery in the standards and
availability of rehabilitation care across the country. Some of the barriers facing
patients as they access rehabilitation and move back into the community include a
shortage of staff and suitable housing. Time limits on treatment being determined by
service providers rather than by patients’ needs.
As well as examining the gaps in rehabilitation, the conference looked at ways to
share best practice to deliver reliable care across the community, with providers of all
services working together with the NHS in a joined up way and not in isolation.
Colin Ettinger, a partner at Irwin Mitchell who represents many victims of serious
“It must be a focus of the government’s healthcare reforms
to ensure that appropriate rehabilitation care is properly
funded and readily available for those who need it.”