Team talk: MS patients trial pioneering group clinics

04 Oct 2017

A pilot is underway for multiple sclerosis (MS) group clinics, thanks to our grant funding.

MS can come on suddenly and affect people at any age, and ongoing care is vital to manage both the condition and the mental well-being of patients.

Previously, MS patients met clinical staff for 15-minute check-ups twice a year – but patients rarely had time to go through their issues, and staff found themselves repeating the same advice to every patient.

The new clinics, led by Alison Thomson (pictured right) are regular four-hour-long sessions where a small group of MS patients and clinical staff cover issues in depth with the option of one-on-one clinical consultations.

Sessions start with an ice-breaker, then focus on a relevant area such as falls, prevention of urinary tract infections, and general lifestyle issues.

Harriet Smith is an MS Patient and Facilitator of the MS group clinics and is in the photo above, demonstrating how to get up after a fall. She says: “The clinics are a safe space in which patients – supported and encouraged by their peers – can practise ways of falling and getting back up, developing their confidence.” 

The patient feedback has been very positive so far and the team hope to see clinical benefits such as fewer bladder infections too. If the results continue to be positive then a larger trial will be rolled out to see if the clinics could have a wider impact both for patients in the hospitals we support and further afield.

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