news and events

If you would like to receive occasional news from SWANO, as well as information about future events, simply click on the button below, which will open up a blank email. There's no need to do anything other than send the email and we will be in touch with news of any forthcoming events. We won't use this information for any other purpose.

SWANO events

Please use this link for news and event information requests only. For all other correspondence please use the links on the contacts page.

November 2015

Right Chair, Right Time, Right Now. Urgent: response required

Right chair, right time, right nowThe Wheelchair Leadership Alliance is urging supporters of its Right Chair, Right Time, Right Now campaign to respond to a consultation on the Government's mandate to NHS England to 2020. Though now live, the consultation is only open for comment until 23rd November 2015, so time is very tight.

Find out more ...


October 2015

South West Strategic Clinical Network




Can you help? Neurological rehabilitation in the South West Peninsula
All the health, social care and charitable organisations are working together in the Peninsula to improve the provision of neurological rehabilitation.  

The aim of this work:

  • To improve the Neurological Rehabilitation care given to patients, their families and their carers.
  • To make this care truly person focused. Ie actually what they want and not what is available, taking account of patients complex individual needs.
  • To treat people in the place and with the care that is the best for them.

Who is involved?
All Health, Socials Care and charities that provide care and all organisations that commission (pay for) that care.

How is the work progressing?
A steering group has been set up to oversee and lead this work but a most of the work is being carried out at a local level by enthusiasts and individuals within their own organisations outside the meetings.

Your help is needed
To ensure the work truly meets the needs of the person we need as much input as possible from patients, carers and their families. Only by having this will the work be truly person focused.

We will be seeking your help in a number of different ways, so if you are interested in being part of this please contact:

Ruth Hall
0113 8255116 or 07796 994459

South West House
Blackbrook Park Avenue
Taunton, TA1 2PX


10th July 2015

New report by the National Audit Office (NAO)
A new report by the National Audit Office (NAO) has shown that the government has failed to achieve key objectives for improving services for millions of people with neurological conditions. Reviewing progress against recommendations made by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee (PAC) in 2012, the NAO’s report shows that progress has been ‘poor’ against two of four agreed recommendations, and only ‘moderate’ in the other two.

Commenting on the report, Arlene Wilkie, Chief Executive of the Neurological Alliance, said: “Three years on from the Public Account Committee’s report, it is unacceptable that so little progress has been made in vital areas that were identified as needing urgent improvement. It only adds to the sense that people living with neurological conditions are not seen as a priority within today’s NHS. We need action so that the needs of millions of people with complex conditions must no longer be overlooked.”

Key recommendations that have not been achieved include:

  1. Access to services
    The government has failed to use levers such as the clinical commissioning group outcomes indicator set to improve access to neurology services across the country and as a result neurology is mentioned in only half of local strategies.
  2. Improving data
    The government has failed to rectify the shortage of neurology data, which means for example that the NHS has no record of the numbers of neurology service users and no effective measure of patient outcomes.
  3. Care planning
    The government has failed to ensure that everyone with a long-term neurological condition has a care plan which means that their changing care needs are simply not being met.

Neurology services continue to suffer from a range of issues including highly variable access to specialist expertise, long waiting times for diagnosis, and poor care planning and coordination, as set out in the Alliance’s Invisible Patients report and the recent acute neurology survey by the Association of British Neurologists. The Neurological Alliance will now write to the PAC calling for a full review of neurology in light of the NAO’s findings.


12th January 2015

The Invisible Patients: a new report from the Neurological Alliance
The Neurological Alliance has launched a new report, The Invisible Patients: Revealing the state of neurology services. Bringing together the findings of the Neurological Alliance's inaugural quality of commissioning audit and neurological patient experience survey, the report identifies significant variation in the quality of the commissioning of neurological services among clinical commissioning groups (CCGs). Findings include:

  • The Invisible PatientsOnly 14.7% of CCGs have assessed local costs relating to the provision of neurology services

  • Only 20.4% and 26.2% of CCGs respectively have assessed the number of people using neurological services and the prevalence of neurological conditions within their area

  • Only 33% of CCGs obtain vital feedback from patients in regards to the neurological services they commission

  • These issues have a significant impact on patients' care, with 58.1% of patients having experienced problems in accessing the services or treatment they need.


In response, The Invisible Patients sets out a number of recommendations. Find out more on the Neurological Alliance website.




Across the NHS South West, there are estimated to be nearly one million people living with some type of neurological condition. Check out the figures here: The number of people living with a long term condition in the NHS South West area

about swano | terms of reference | condition factsheets | swano contacts