Many of you visiting Horsham Hospital Physiotherapy Department of late will have noticed the refurbishment work taking place.
This is the long awaited refurbishment to accommodate the new Community Musculo-Skeletal (MSK) Service that started up in October 2014.
This includes therapies such as Physiotherapy, Hydrotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Podiatry, and Pain Management, and other community clinics.
At present the MSK community service covers Central Sussex - the A23 corridor - including Brighton and Hove, Horsham, Mid Sussex and Crawley.
The Community MSK Service providers are a partnership, of Brighton and Hove Integrated Care Services (BICS), The Horder Centre, Sussex Community Trust and Sussex Partnership Foundation Trust.
The Service provides assessment, diagnostics, diagnosis and treatment for Musculo-Skeletal conditions including services for patients with Rheumatology disease, pre and post orthopaedic surgery care (including pain relief and management of symptoms before and after surgery) together with more integrated care for musculo-skeletal long term conditions like arthritis.
The aim is to streamline the service, bringing MSK services locally for Horsham with the advantage of having all your NHS therapy services for the management of MSK conditions together in one place - a one stop service.
Orthopaedic Surgery and some Rheumatology and Pain Treatments will still take place in the acute hospital of choice with patients returning to the local community MSK service for aftercare.
There has been a reduced level of service running for the last year at Horsham Hospital, mainly due to the delay in the refurbishment work to accommodate the community clinics, difficulties in recruitment to some of the new posts, the introduction of a new IT system and training of all staff in new ways of working.
The refurbishment work is due to finish this May /June time, and the Hydrotherapy pool is due to reopen soon.
I am hoping to organise an open day later in the summer followed by some educational talks at the hospital on common MSK conditions and how best to manage and treat them.
Over the last year we have been receiving some comments / complaints mostly about access to the MSK services, and I hope the above explains some of the difficulties we have been experiencing.
We welcome your comments and views about the MSK service at Horsham Hospital to help going forward, ironing out past problems and developing the service for the future.
Lay Member Patient Representative from the Horsham and Mid Sussex CCG for the Central Sussex MSK operational Group. The Horsham District Shadow Governor for Sussex Community NHS Trust
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