Peninsula Spinal Network

The Peninsula Regional Spinal Network’s role is to help define standards and pathways to improve access and care for patients presenting with spinal conditions electively and in emergency situations across the south west peninsula region.  Its core principles are:

  • To facilitate the delivery of excellent patient care through the implementation of national and regional policies and pathways (for example, the National Back and Radicular Pain Pathway)
  • To promote best practice across the region, share common aims across organisations through collaborative working and peer review
  • To reduce variation in surgical practice where this is unwarranted
  • To support service evaluation, configuration, audit and research
  • To promote sustainable and motivated working practice for all staff
  • The provision and co-ordination of staff education
  • Workforce planning for future service provision
  • Reduction of the risk of litigation

The Peninsula Spinal Network became a Regional Spinal Network (RSN) in 2017, and was hosted by the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust.  From April 2020 it has been hosted by Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, the region’s other Hub centre.  Between 2017 and 2020, its workstreams have included:

  • Production of regional policies and pathways for elective and emergency care
  • Agreed policies for MRI imaging of emergency spinal patients
  • Repatriation
  • Consent Policy
  • Electronic referral and response system
  • BSR implementation and data collection
  • Regional service evaluation, audit and MDT as part of its quality agenda
  • Orthopaedic and Neurosurgical collaboration
  • Improved and defined Regional Spinal Training
  • Co-ordinated research