Directors Dr Alan Whone and Lucy Mooney of the Parkinson’s and Other Movement Disorders Health Integration Team (MOVE HIT) look back at the team’s achievements in 2019-20.
The MOVE HIT works to improve quality of life for people with Parkinson's and other movement disorders in the Bristol area and beyond.
This year has seen big developments in our core service provision, due to new consultant, physiotherapist and Parkinson’s outreach posts being approved. These additions to our team will improve our ability to support patients to stay well and increase capacity to develop the core services pathway. Our patient and public Involvement (PPI) group helpfully gave time to draft priorities for the ‘ongoing care’ phase of this pathway, which is ready for discussion with health professionals involved in the HIT. The PPI group has also led excellent developments in increasing the number of tailored exercise opportunities.
Our complex therapies for movement disorders service has expanded and improved at pace. We have seen increasing numbers of duodopa patients and completed our pathway maps for apomorphine and deep brain stimulation, which are now ready for design and sharing. We published ‘Deep brain stimulation: practical insights and common queries’ in BMJ Practical Neurology – furthering our reputation as a leading centre with useful practice to emulate. Lucy Mooney is now Vice-Chair of the DBS Nurse Specialist Association, able to spread good practice and learn from other centres through this role. We have set up peer support sessions for patients receiving these treatments and those close to them. This is proving valuable in sharing tips for living well with the treatments we provide.
A highlight of our year was the education day we ran about the complex therapies service on 11 February 2020. Through a series of talks from clinicians involved in all aspects of the treatments, attendees learnt more about the therapies and how best to identify and support suitable patients. Importantly, clinicians heard directly from patients who shared their experiences. All attendees rated the day as 'very good' or 'good'. 98% of attendees said it improved their understanding of eligibility and there were increases in confidence to refer for the different treatments.
Research remains a priority for the HIT, with Dr Alan Whone taking on a role as NIHR Clinical Research Network West lead for neurodegeneration. This gives us a great opportunity to increase co-ordination of local research efforts and increase participation. We have been active in University of Bristol’s new Neuroscience Strategy and the associated network, which should increase connections and capability for more local movement disorders research.
Our team is currently working hard to co-ordinate the response to COVID-19 for our patients. Together, we are working across organisations to develop new pathways and target support for vulnerable people – exactly what the HIT is here to do.