A report from a committee of MPs has found that services for people with neurological conditions in the UK is patchy and poorly co-ordinated.
One example outlined in the report found that epilepsy care was a postcode lottery, and where patients lived had an impact on whether or not they could remain seizure free.
In South-West Lincolnshire nearly nine out of 10 patients with epilepsy were seizure free for 12 months. While in Hull and North Manchester that number fell to fewer than five out of 10.
The Public Accounts Committee report calls for NHS England to look at how they can improve poorly co-ordinated local services, inconsistent hospital care and delays in diagnosing conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.
Neurological conditions can be devastating, and even fatal, to the patient.
The report recommends that NHS England find a way of tackling the postcode lottery with services, and offer a long term, personalised care plan, to the the more than 4 million people living with a neurological condition.
Arlene Wilkie, chief executive of the Neurological Alliance, said: “We urge NHS England and the Department of Health to act quickly to ensure that everyone living with a neurological condition receives a high-quality, accessible service.”
The report continues to recommend that NHS England make better use of the resources available to them. There are 650 consultant neurologists in England and a number of specialist nurses, all of which should be used to help improve the access to care for patients.
A Department of Health spokesman said: “We spend over £3bn every year on neurological services, we have set up a new children’s national epilepsy service and we are making sure patients with progressive neurological diseases can access the latest technology to help them communicate.
But we know that more can be done and, along with NHS England, we will consider these recommendations and respond in due course.”
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