New stroke rehabilitation centre opens in Sheffield

Hundreds of stroke survivors in Sheffield will get better services after a new rehabilitation centre opened at Norfolk Park.

The Stroke Pathway Assessment and Rehabilitation Centre (SPARC) will offer ‘dedicated 24/7 specialist rehabilitation’ to the 1,000 or so stroke patients Sheffield Teaching Hospitals sees each year.

The new Stroke Pathway Assessment and Rehabilitation Centre (SPARC) at Norfolk Park in Sheffield.

The new Stroke Pathway Assessment and Rehabilitation Centre (SPARC) at Norfolk Park in Sheffield.

The centre has a therapy gym with specialist rehabilitation equipment where patients can improve balance, coordination and strength, as well as a specially designed kitchen where they can learn how to adapt to things like cooking one-handed.

Outside the unit there are also spacious grounds for social interaction and a communal area for dining, both of which can be key in easing depression and anxiety – feelings stroke survivors say are common features of recovery.

Dr Amanda Jones, clinical lead for the stroke pathway and stroke nurse consultant at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to be opening this new, stroke rehabilitation centre, which is the culmination of a three-year programme to transform stroke services across the city.

“It can take months and possibly years for stroke survivors to recover both physically and emotionally from a stroke, so this is a fantastic development which will enable stroke patients to receive the right treatment and support at the right time in the right place.

“Many patients transferring to the new centre have already commented that due to the environment they feel more positive and motivated to embark on their rehabilitation programme, and that they are really progressing with their recovery.

“This is really positive and great news for stroke survivors in the area.”

The new centre is expected to reduce long-term dependence on acute hospital care, ensuring patients get the most appropriate care at the right point in their recovery.

It has already freed up around ten beds at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital’s acute stroke unit, which can now be used to further develop services for those in the early stages of their stroke.

Stroke is the leading the leading cause of adult disability in the UK, accounting for around 1 per centre of the total NHS budget.

It affects young as well as elderly people, with around 30 per cent of all strokes occurring in those under 65.