NHS: Neurology Care

Baroness Barker Excerpts
Monday 26th February 2024

(4 months, 4 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Markham Portrait Lord Markham (Con)
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Yes, that is precisely what I was referring to: the progressive neurological condition toolkit is all about the pathways for that integrated approach to it all. Again, there are 15 million people affected—I think this statistic was mentioned earlier—and one in five deaths come from related conditions, so making sure we have that integration with palliative care as well as the other services is key.

Baroness Barker Portrait Baroness Barker (LD)
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My Lords, neurological conditions require diagnosis by a specialist. Thereafter, the individuals need the input of people from all the different disciplines of the NHS. At the moment, the expectation to manage that falls upon GPs, and they cannot manage it. The key people who can are specialist nurses, and we have a severe deficit of specialist nurses for several neurological conditions. Can the Minister say how that deficit is to be addressed by the workforce plan?

Lord Markham Portrait Lord Markham (Con)
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I thank the noble Baroness. Yes, the point about epilepsy nurses was made very clear to me just half an hour ago, and I quizzed both the national clinical director of neurology and Professor Stephen Powis on that subject this morning. I was assured that the next stage of the long-term workforce plan goes into that level of detail. I have made a commitment to the House to share some of that data, so we can make sure that it really is covered properly.