Patients are being let down by intransigence – Bradshaw

Alliance health spokesperson Paula Bradshaw MLA has said that it is clear what is needed for reform of the health and social care service, patients are being let down by intransigence.

Ms Bradshaw was speaking in support of an Assembly debate on the work of the Assembly All Party Group on Epilepsy and the Northern Ireland Advisory Group of Epilepsy Action. Ms Bradshaw said: “Epilepsy is a condition which does not discriminate. It can strike any of us at any time and currently affects around 20,000 people and their families in Northern Ireland.

“There is no question we need to create expert led multi-disciplinary teams. We need more nurse specialists, we need better workforce planning and better use of resources. These arguments apply to how we treat epilepsy, but equally they apply to many other condition specific conditions. That is why I again call on the Health Minister to release the Bengoa report, so we can have an informed debate about how we should treat and care for sufferers of epilepsy and many other illnesses.

“A properly resourced and delivered reform programme will help ensure conditions such as epilepsy are properly diagnosed and appropriate treatment packages put in place. It would be interesting to know if this is the type of reform proposed by the expert panel led by Professor Bengoa, but until the report is made public, elected representatives and the wider public are being denied important and potentially life changing information.”

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