Up to 450 patients a year could benefit from the scheme, developed by the NHS Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to provide long-term rehabilitation support.
Dr Lynn Hampson, clinical lead for the CCG and a Rochdale GP, said the service would have a significant impact on the care provided to patients.
‘Last year more than 350 stroke patients from Rochdale Borough were admitted to hospital,’ she said. ‘Strokes are the largest single cause of disability in the UK but providing timely, specialist rehabilitation significantly reduces the chances of disability.’
The service will support stroke patients medically and socially, at home and in the community.
The CCG said patients could use the service for as long as they needed it. The service provides early, supported discharge and a community rehabilitation service to patients.
Dr Hampson added: ‘The new early, supported discharge service offers physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, specialist nursing and psychological assistance appropriate to each stroke patient, six days a week.
‘After discharge from hospital, rehabilitation continues at home with patients and therapists setting and reaching goals, support for patients and their families, and regular post-stroke health checks.’
The service is supported by work in Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, the Stroke Association and Rochdale council.