The NHS is asking local people who have experience of stroke to complete a survey to help improve local stroke care.

You don’t have to have had a stroke yourself – if you are the relative or friend of someone who has, and you have views on the service they received in Kent and Medway, your views are welcome.

The survey is part of a review of the care stroke patients receive within the vital first 72 hours. The review is looking at stroke services across Kent and Medway and is being led by the eight local NHS clinical commissioning groups.

Stroke is the third biggest killer in the UK and a major cause of long term disability. People who have had a stroke need rapid access to a specialist medical team 24/7 – doctors, nurses and therapists – to maximise their chances of survival and enable their recovery. However, this is not always possible in Kent and Medway at the moment, due mainly to staff shortages and other pressures on the system. The aim of the review is to make it possible for everyone in Kent and Medway to have access to clinically sustainable, hyper-acute / acute stroke services 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

More than 100 people around the county have already given their views face to face at listening events as part of the Kent and Medway stroke review, which builds on previous work carried out in west Kent. If you didn’t get the chance to take part in these events in person, there is still time to make sure your voice is heard by completing the online survey www.surveymonkey.com/r/KMStroke or requesting a paper copy by email: engagement.secsu@nhs.net or phone: 03000 424348. The deadline for responding is 26 October.
Although the review is looking at care provided in the first 72 hours following a stroke, the survey also covers some aspects of aftercare services which support people to regain as much of their independence as possible, There are also questions around stroke prevention and rehabilitation which are recognised to be important aspects of stroke care. All feedback will be looked at and considered in full by the CCGs.

NHS West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group plans and buys healthcare for the people of Maidstone, Tonbridge and Malling, Tunbridge Wells and the southern part of Sevenoaks.

For media enquiries, please contact Amanda Crawford, Associate, NHS South East Commissioning Support Unit (South East CSU) on 03000 424499 or at amanda.crawford1@nhs.net