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NHS England launches rehabilitation guidelines for commissioners

‘Commissioning Guidance for Rehabilitation’ published by NHS England this month, is a new tool, intended not only for use by commissioners in commissioning rehabilitation services for their local population, but it also contains useful information for patients, their families, clinicians and provider organisations.

Available as an interactive pdf, the guidance details the scope, breadth and depth of rehabilitation, the components of good quality rehabilitation, how to decide whether the services that are being commissioned are of good quality, and how to compare rehabilitation services locally, regionally and nationally. Links are included to the latest evidence and examples of good practice, together with practical advice to commission good quality rehabilitation, including a ‘ten top-tips’.

Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) is just one of many conditions included in the guidance. Professor Michael Barnes, UKABIF Chair said: “Specialist neurorehabilitation services play a vital role in the management of patients with ABI who are admitted to hospital; they take these individuals after their immediate medical and surgical needs have been met, maximise their recovery and support their safe transition back to the community. We need commissioners to understand the crucial role of rehabilitation in the ABI patient care pathway and this guidance should help to improve their knowledge base.”

The guidance emphasises the substantial evidence demonstrating that rehabilitation services deliver long-term cost reductions and add value and equality across the health and care system.