DHSS Report on Lymphoedema Services

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A review was commissioned by the Chief Medical Officer in February 2003 to make recommendations to help commissioners and providers of lymphoedema services and the primary care sector meet the needs of those who suffer from lymphoedema in Northern Ireland.  The Lymphoedema Services Review Group, chaired by Dr. Angela Garvey, Consultant in Palliative Care Medicine, included healthcare professionals and patients from varied backgrounds (including Lymphoedema Support NI) and representatives from the Department of Health and other public bodies.

The 'LYMPHOEDEMA SERVICES REPORT OF THE LYMPHOEDEMA SERVICES REVIEW GROUP' was published in September 2004 by the Northern Ireland Department of Health, Social Services and Public Health. 

This report concluded that, "in general there is limited provision of lymphoedema education and a lack of knowledge or awareness amongst healthcare professionals, leading to under diagnosis and inappropriate management of patients."  "The survey of HPSS provision of lymphoedema care, which was commissioned by the Review Group, has revealed a distinct lack of lymphoedema care.  There is inequality in service provision, with some areas having limited service and other areas having no service at all.  There is also inequality in access to service provision for patients with cancer related lymphoedema and patients with non-cancer related lymphoedema."

Copies of the report (ref:248/2004) are available from the Department of Health (DHSSPS): DHSSPS, Castle Buildings, Belfast, BT4 3SQ.  Tel: (028) 9052212