NHS RightCare community rehabilitation toolkit

Community rehabilitation services are uncoordinated and inconsistent, supporting data to help improve services is lacking and the workforce is often insufficient to meet current need.

Health systems that experience these issues can use this new RightCare toolkit as a key resource in helping to improve community rehabilitation services.

Rehabilitation cuts across the health and social care system supporting people who are in different settings and who have individual needs.

This new toolkit aims to support the commissioning of holistic community rehabilitation services that are based around people’s needs rather than being condition specific.

Karen Middleton, Chief Executive, Chartered Society of Physiotherapy said: “The NHS Long Term Plan makes a number of commitments to improve availability of personalised, community-based support and rehabilitation for people to manage long term conditions. It contains specific goals to improve community support that enables people to better manage frailty, cardiovascular, respiratory and cancer.

The Plan recognises over the next decade there needs to be a re-prioritisation of funding, so that resources for the community and primary care sector rises at a faster rate than the acute sector.

To ensure that resources result in better quality and consistency of community rehabilitation we need to improve our data infrastructure. This means community rehabilitation services providing consistent data on service delivery and outcomes, and commissioners using consistent measure of population need.

This Toolkit is a valuable resource to support service improvement that has the potential to make lasting change in meeting population need and making the NHS sustainable for the long term.” 

The toolkit has been developed in collaboration with an expert group of stakeholders including: Age UK, British Society of Rehabilitation Medicine, The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, Macmillan Cancer Support, MS Society, Royal College of Occupational Therapists, Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, Stroke Association and Versus Arthritis. 

Health systems can use this resource as a framework for local improvement discussions.