This is a category taken from the full feed of Musculoskeletal and Arthritis news provided by ARMA's members.
  • The Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) is the umbrella body for the arthritis and musculoskeletal community in the UK, and our mission is to transform the quality of life of people with musculoskeletal conditions. We have 33 member organisations ranging from specialised support groups for rare diseases to major research charities and national professional bodies.

Resources

The Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) has developed free support resources for health, care and voluntary sector leaders who want to drive action through partnership working around the NHS Long Term Plan. The resources include online learning, webinars, workshops, coaching and individual support and are aimed at ICS/STP leads, commissioners, clinicians, and professionals from the voluntary sector.

The NHS Long Term Plan commits local healthcare systems to working in a new way, including a focus on prevention and reducing health inequalities. Building relationships – with other health agencies, local government, providers and communities – will be essential for the leaders charged with bringing this ambitious vision to life.

The NHS Long Term Plan recognised the role Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) organisations could play, in partnership with the NHS, to help deliver its vision. At a strategic level, NHS England is committed to working with VCSEs and establishing models for more equitable partnerships and better integration, and to increase the influence of the voice of patients. More locally, STP’s/ICS’s, as with any relatively new player in a system, are taking time to build consistently high and constructive levels of engagement with VCSE organisations and communities more widely. 

The Building Health Partnerships programme and this wider support offer – Transforming Healthcare Together – have been designed in response to all these challenges, to work intensively with statutory services to test and pilot new approaches to partnership working, and to support the leaders working to bring the NHS Long Term Plan to life.

The free support offer is for health, care and VCSE leaders who want to drive action through partnership working. There is a range of support for different levels, whether you are just getting started or have been working in this way for some time.

The Health Foundation, Kings Fund and Nuffield Trust recently published a report Closing the Gap: key areas for action on the health and care workforce. The report looked at two areas – nursing and general practice, both very relevant to MSK health care. At the moment the future looks bleak, with 41,000 nursing vacancies in the NHS and another 5,000 in social care. There are 2,500 fewer GPs than are needed. The report, however, is optimistic that these shortfalls can be addressed, provided policy changes are made.

On nursing, the recommendations include increased training, international recruitment and a range of measure on pay and career opportunities. There are particular issues for recruitment of specialist nurses, something which ARMA member the Rheumatology Nursing Network is very aware of.

Proposals for general practice chime exactly with the work ARMA members have been doing around First Contact Practitioner. The report recognises the potential for nurses and AHPs to work across traditional boundaries and deliver more patient-focused care, moving from a traditional GP model to multidisciplinary team working. It is important to remember that these changes don’t just help make up the shortfall in GP numbers, they also have the potential to improve patient care.

New online infographic posters summarising the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance relevant to allied health professionals are now available online. Produced by the Institute of Osteopathy and endorsed by NICE, these easy to use resources provide a quick reference guide to current NICE guidance which can be printed and displayed in a clinical setting and support CPD.

There are currently three topics available; osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and spondyloarthritis, with plans to develop others in the near future.

The posters translate the NICE guidance into an easy to follow visual format to aid health professionals in primary care to identify and assess for the conditions and provide recommended pathways for care and management.

Matthew Rogers, Professional Development Manager at the Institute of Osteopathy and fellow of NICE, has been leading the project: “As a clinician I am acutely aware of the demands on health professionals to keep up to date with current guidance. As part of my fellowship with NICE I was keen to develop resources that would assist clinicians more easily embed the guidance into practice.”

The infographics are available to download for free from www.iosteopathy.org/for-osteopaths/clinical-guidelines.

Sign up for the webinar rescheduled for 15 February 2019 at 12.30—1.30pm

The rescheduled webinar on Friday 15 February 2019 describes the set-up of the Telford Musculoskeletal Service and some of the problems encountered along the way, with the solutions used.

The Service is a single-point of access for rheumatology, pain, physiotherapy, orthopaedics and musculoskeletal services in the NHS within Telford. The service is a prime vendor type model with Shropshire Community Trust holding the main contract and sub-contracting to other NHS and Private providers in the locality.

The speaker is GP Dr Louise Warburton and medical lead for Telford MSK service, which sees a wide variety of patients with MSK and rheumatology problems. She has wide experience in a variety of roles related to MSK services including GP champion for Keele University working in Primary Care MSK research and dissemination. 

Who should attend? Commissioners, first contact practitioners, GPs, hospital consultants, physiotherapists, patients and patient organisations and charities.

The webinar is provided by ARMA and NHS England. Previous registrants do not need to register again.

ARMA webinars are free to access thanks to the support of our partners. We would like to thank Roche Products Limited and Chugai Pharma UK for supporting this webinar.

Despite improvements in life expectancy, England lags behind other countries on many key health outcomes. A new report from the Kings Fund argues that to address this, we need to move away from a system just focused on diagnosing and treating illness towards one that is based on promoting wellbeing and preventing ill health.

Population health is an approach that aims to improve physical and mental health outcomes, promote wellbeing and reduce health inequalities across an entire population. The King’s Fund’s vision is to reduce inequalities and achieve health outcomes on a par with the best in the world by focusing on population health locally, regionally and nationally. Whilst the report does not focus upon it directly, we know MSK health underpins all other aspects of health, as ARMA has always argued. The vision cannot be successful unless MSK health is part of it.

The report outlines a framework for population health and calls for action at national, regional and local levels. This should include: ambitious and binding national goals to drive progress; a cross-government strategy for reducing health inequalities; stronger political and system leadership; greater clarity on the roles and accountability of national bodies and local organisations; and increased investment in prevention, public health and spending that supports population health.

A new paper published [24 October 2018] in the Lancet highlights regional imbalances in health and reveals the huge burden of disability linked to long-term conditions such as low back and neck pain, anxiety and depression, highlighting the need for health services to adapt to managing these conditions. 

The study uses GBD 2016 data on mortality, causes of death, and disability to analyse the burden of disease in the countries of the UK and within local authorities in England by deprivation quintile.

Changes in health in the countries of the UK and 150 English Local Authority areas 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016

Read more and download this paper from Lancet website.

The latest resource posted to the MSK hub is new support from PHE to increase physical activity for disabled adults.

4 in 5 disabled people report they would like to do more physical activity, highlighting continued barriers that prevent them from being active. The evidence review and infographic can be accessed via the hub, along with a range of other MSK related resources. Why not take a look and see what you can find?

You can now see the video from our recent webinar in the Musculoskeletal Networks series:
Commissioning for Quality: Community-based Rheumatology Service

Presented by Erica Gould, Nurse Consultant at Community Rheumatology Service Modality Partnership, the webinar outlines how a community-based rheumatology service can provide effective management of rheumatology patients, with benefits both to the patients and the usage of clinical resources.

Findings from the pilot study demonstrated that patients requiring disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDS) can easily be managed in a community setting. A community setting with provision of the specialist skills provides patients with local, more convenient care and reduced disengagement. It also optimised the use of local resources – for example, moving some of the routine follow-up activity for rheumatology patients (such as drug monitoring) would undercut the tariff by 30%.

Visit the ARMA Webinars page to watch the presentation and discussion.