Muscle-wasting Conditions: 16th July 2013

Caroline Lucas (Brighton, Pavilion) (Green)
10. If he will take steps to ensure that people affected by muscle- wasting conditions in the South East Coast NHS area are adequately supported after September 2013; and if he will make a statement. [165207]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health (Anna Soubry)
NHS England commissions some elements of neurological services through specialist services commissioning arrangements, while clinical commissioning groups commission general neurological services. I am informed that the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign and the Surrey and Sussex area team are considering funding the care pathway adviser post for a further six months.
 
Caroline Lucas
I thank the Minister for her answer, but an exploration just for the potential of a mere six months’ reprieve is not good enough. As things stand, for people with muscular dystrophy and their families in the South East Coast region, from September, that is set to be the only part of the country without access to a local care and support advocate. Therefore, will the Minister agree to meet me as a matter of urgency to discuss what can be done to ensure long-term funding for that vital post, which sufferers and their families want to see continue?

Anna Soubry
The simple answer is absolutely yes. My hon. Friend the Member for North Thanet (Sir Roger Gale) has also raised this matter through parliamentary questions and the like. I am more than happy to have that meeting.