Three CCGs in England have come together to launch an initiative aimed at improving wheelchair services for users in Hampshire.
CCGs serving Portsmouth, Fareham and Gosport, and South Eastern Hampshire are inviting wheelchair users to give their insight and suggestions on how services can be improved for users and their carers.
An online survey being pushed to wheelchair users in the area is aimed at tackling concerns including long waiting times for assessments and equipment.
Other issues are being considered in the scheme, for example users being offered the chance to buy their own equipment with Personal Wheelchair Budgets and how the appointments system can be bettered.
Suzannah Rosenberg, director of quality and commissioning for NHS Portsmouth CCG, told The News that too many people have found in the past that the NHS wheelchair service in the area have “not been working as well as it should”.
She said: “We are
reviewing wheelchair provision with a view to making positive
changes, because for people who rely on wheelchairs for a long-term
health need, this service is absolutely and fundamentally important.
“We want people to get a better experience, and the best way for us to know whether we are on the right track is to hear directly from the experts – the people who receive the service.
“We have some ideas about what a better service might look like – for example, giving people more control over choosing and buying their own wheelchair – but we need to hear from people who will know most about what might work, and what we should avoid.
“I would urge anyone living in Portsmouth and south east Hampshire who has a long-term need for the NHS wheelchair service to get in touch with us, and help us to improve the support we can offer.”