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Mum’s plea to reinstate vital stroke service
7:00am Saturday 12th October 2013 in News
A BLOCKLEY mum-of-three has made a desperate plea for funding to reinstate a vital service for stroke patients.
Sue Sandars, who suffered a stroke in 2010, said she was very concerned that Gloucestershire’s stroke coordinator – who was appointed to set up local support groups for people who have suffered a stroke – is being made redundant in December.
The service was set up three years ago after the Government made shortterm funding available to county councils for stroke services, following the publication of the National Stroke Strategy in 2007.
In Gloucestershire, the funding was used for a three-year contract with the Stroke Association to set up community support groups which were to become selfsustaining when the funding ceased.
The service was originally due to end in March, but was extended to September and then to December.
But Mrs Sandars, aged 51, of Mill View, said without the point of contact in the county, a vital lifeline to people who have suffered a stroke will be lost as there will be nowhere to go for information and advice.
“The stroke groups have really benefited a lot of us,” she said. “Not only the stroke patients but the partners, husbands and wives – the unpaid carers.
“It’s a lifeline. We can go there and chat about our stroke and what we’re going through.”
She added: “I think Gloucestershire is quite a wealthy county. Is there a secret benefactor who might be able to help us? If we can find one of these very wealthy citizens within Gloucestershire, even if they give £1,000 towards keeping this person’s role going, it will help.”
Simon Bird, head of operations for the Stroke Association in the South West, said: “We were funded to help start voluntary groups in Gloucestershire to help overcome isolation and give people affected by stroke the chance to come together.
“We accept that this service was always given a set timeframe and are grateful that the funding was continued for an additional nine months.
“But many stroke survivors and their carers have said that more needs to be done in the county to offer longer-term support so people so can make better recoveries and rebuild their lives after a stroke.”
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