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An overview of specialist services for Huntington's Disease in the United Kingdom

Willock, Rosa, Rickards, Hugh, Rosser, Anne E. ORCID:, Haw, Alistair, Stanley, Cath, Hossain, Pushpa, Rodríguez-Santana, Idaira, Doherty, Maria, Blair, Rachel and Kane, Wendy 2023. An overview of specialist services for Huntington's Disease in the United Kingdom. Journal of Huntington's Disease 12 (4) , pp. 363-370. 10.3233/JHD-220560

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Background: Huntington’s disease (HD) is a rare inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterized by complex evolving needs that change as the condition progresses. There is limited understanding about the organization of HD clinical services and their resourcing in the United Kingdom (UK). Objective: To understand the organization and resourcing of specialist HD services for people with HD (PwHD) in the UK Methods: This cross-sectional study collected quantitative data via on online survey, and qualitative data via telephone semi-structured interviews. Descriptive statistics were used to describe quantitative outcomes, and qualitative results were analyzed using content analysis. Results: A total of 31 specialist services for HD were identified. Of the 27 services that completed the online survey, 23 had an active multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals (HCPs) and were led primarily by a mental health trust (26%) or tertiary referral hospital (26%). Specialist services offered outpatient clinics (96%), outreach in the community (74%), telemedicine (70%), inpatient beds (26%) and satellite clinics (26%). Many services indicated that their capacity (ability to see patients as often as needed with current resources) was difficult, with some services reporting more difficulty at the early or later stages of HD. Key resourcing gaps were identified with access to facilities, HCPs and referral networks. Conclusions: This research highlights the variation in organization and capacity within individual HD services as well as current resourcing and gaps in access that influence this capacity. Further research should be done to understand the impact of service organization and current resourcing gaps in access on the quality of care provided for PwHD in the UK.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: IOS Press
ISSN: 1879-6397
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 5 January 2024
Date of Acceptance: 28 November 2023
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2024 14:31

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