Stroke patients should receive 45 minutes of physiotherapy a day
Patients who are recovering after suffering a stroke should receive 45 minutes of physiotherapy or another form of rehabilitation each day, a new report states.
The UK’s Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has published its Key Recommendations for Stroke 2016 document, which includes new guidance on stroke care for all of the healthcare workers involved in helping these patients on their way to full recovery. It features 30 recommendations in total, which are based on the new 151-page National Clinical Guideline for Stroke compiled by the RCP.
Physiotherapy should begin between 24 and 48 hours after a stroke, depending on its severity, with experts providing short exercise sessions each day to all capable patients to help them get back on their feet. Over time, these should increase in length, until the patient is receiving physio for up to 45 minutes a day.
The RCP believes that all stroke patients should be offered the most suitable form of rehabilitation for their needs for at least three-quarters of an hour every day, whether this involves speech therapy, exercise or another form of care.
In addition, the healthcare body wants industry commissioners to be using specialist rehabilitation services where necessary to make sure that all patients, regardless of the severity of their stroke, are receiving the best possible care for their individual needs.
Also recommended in the new guidance is that inpatient stroke care teams should meet at least once a week to discuss the patients they are currently caring for to ensure that no important information has been missed that could potentially quicken their recovery.
University of East Anglia physiotherapy lecturer Nicola Hancock, who contributed to the new guidance, commented: “The new National Clinical Guideline for Stroke is the most comprehensive, evidence-based tool available to guide practice all the way through the stroke pathway, from the earliest stages to long-term management of this important condition.”
Written by Mathew Horton