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Postcode lottery affecting arthritis care in the NHS

Published on 24/04/2012

A new survey has revealed that there is an almost three-fold variation in the amount of money primary care trusts spend on arthritis patients across England.

The survey by the Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) found that some health authorities are spending less than a pound a day helping patients with arthritis and other joint problems. Others are spending three times that.

According to the report, called Joint Delivery?, NHS Peterborough spent only £275 per patient in 2009-10, whilst NHS Hartlepool spent £764 per patient in the same year.

At the moment about five per cent of the total NHS budget is spent on musculoskeletal conditions. Money for arthritis patients should be spent on physiotherapy, drugs and pain management clinics.

Professor David Marsh, chairman of the organisation, said: "Joint Delivery? shows that progress in delivering improved musculoskeletal care in the NHS has gone into reverse since ARMA’s previous audit in 2008."

"Urgent action is now needed to address variations in service provision and improve the quality of musculoskeletal services in the NHS."

"ARMA and its members are taking a lead by developing a musculoskeletal clinical network to improve services but we need national action to make musculoskeletal conditions a priority in the new NHS.

"That is why we are today calling for a national outcomes strategy for musculoskeletal conditions to ensure services deliver better outcomes for patients."

Since arthritis is a chronic condition, it may not be covered by private medical insurance. Compare health insurance quotes with full medical underwriting to be told exactly what will be covered on the policy from day one.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  NHS and Hospitals
Postcode lottery affecting arthritis care in the NHSA new survey has revealed that there is an almost three-fold variation in the amount of money primary care trusts spend on arthritis      tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

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