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Respite Care Cutbacks in Scotland for those with MS

Posted Jan 14 2009 8:26pm
Q&A: Ryan Norton, communications manager for the Multiple Sclerosis Society Scotland

Published Date: 02 January 2009
THE communications manager for the Multiple Sclerosis Society Scotland warns of council cutbacks affecting funding for specialist respite care.

Are there fears about declining funding for specialist respite care?
It is obviously an area of concern for us, particularly with the way local authority budgets are going. It is certainly something we will be watching very closely and trying to work with local authorities to address.

Why is respite care so important?
For people with MS, it is important to receive care which meets their needs and Leuchie House (the MS society's centre in North Berwick) is the only specialist MS respite home in Scotland. Many people with extreme MS are almost housebound, so being able to come to Leuchie gives them the opportunity to get away from home. It is also important that carers can have a break as well.

Why do people with MS benefit from specialist care?
The people who work at Leuchie are specifically trained to look after the needs of people with MS. Many of them have years of experience.

Do we need more specialist respite services for people with MS in Scotland?
Yes, we do and it would be good to have more funding to allow people to access that kind of care. Although Leuchie is very busy, there are still times when there is spare capacity and that could be filled if more funding was available to give people more breaks.

The full article appears in The Scotsman newspaper.

Last Updated: 01 January 2009 10:37 PM

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