THANET HRG - FEB 2018
Our Thanet Health Reference Group met at Thanet Clinical Commissioning Group offices last week for our February meeting. The reference group brings together the leading patient representatives from GP Practice Patient Participation Groups across Thanet to discuss local health services and share 'best practice'.
A large part of the meeting was taken up with discussions regarding the current public consultation on proposed stroke service improvements for Kent and Medway and how it affects patients in Thanet.
Some members raised concerns around travel times for ambulances to get to the proposed hyper acute stroke units and regarding our heavily congested roads here in east Kent.
However, one member also explained how a friend, suffering a stroke, had been taken to a local A&E where, despite the very best efforts of hard working and dilligent staff, their sterling work had been frustrated by delays relating to facilities and equipment, with serious consequences.
The infographic above, produced by the stroke review team for Kent and Medway on the very day of our meeting was welcomed by members as a useful summary of the issues concerned.
It was clear from our discussions that residents here in Thanet have genuine and serious concerns regarding travelling times to the proposed hyper acute stroke centres in the locations that have been suggested.
It was also very clear, from the information provided for the consultation, that clinical expertise points to far better outcomes for patients through the hyper acute stroke unit model, used to excellent effect elsewhere in the country.
That being so, through the consultation process, clinical experts will need to convince those living furthest from the site of any eventual centre that they will receive improved services and better outcomes, despite any inevitable travelling time.