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Working towards excellent stroke care in Kent and Medway  

Health commissioners from all eight clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Kent and Medway have been working in partnership on a review of acute stroke services over the last 12 months. The review is in response to national evidence, requirements, and recommendations specifically for ‘hyper-acute' and 'acute' stroke care - in particular, the need for a specialist stroke unit to be available seven days a week.

The review focuses on best clinical practice to improve outcomes for patients, particularly in the first 72 hours after a stroke.

Public and patient voice 

Stroke survivors, their families and carers, and members of the public have played a key part in shaping potential future models of care. Varied, robust and in-depth engagement has taken place with stroke specialists, clinical staff, voluntary organisations, stroke survivors, families and the public in Kent and Medway to gather people’s views and insight.  This has included surveys, focus groups, listening events and clinical engagement events.

In November and December 2015, three in-depth deliberative events, ‘People’s Panels’, looked in detail at the case for change, and questioned and challenged the proposals for improving future stroke care. They also voted on different aspects of services - establishing what they, as patients and carers, value most. 

In September and October 2016, there was a further series of events involving people who have had a stroke, their carers, and members of the public. Healthwatch Kent and Stroke Association quizzed Dr Hargroves and the Programme Director Oena Windibank, commissioners and representatives from other organisations including the ambulance service and public health, about the work to date.

A report is being produced about these latest events.