West Sussex acquired brain injury (ABI) rehab

The term “acquired brain injury” or ABI refers an injury caused to the brain since birth; there are many possible causes, both traumatic (falls, road traffic accidents, assaults) and non-traumatic (infection, surgery, vascular).

In the case of adults with an ABI, before considering whether they are eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC), it is first necessary to consider treatment and rehabilitation. The aim of rehabilitation is to maximise an individual’s recovery and promote their independence.

This kind of rehabilitation can be referred to as “neuro rehabilitation (rehab)” and can fall under several categories and therefore funding types.

NHSE funded neuro rehabilitation

The first type is funded by NHS England and is for those patients with highly complex needs which are categorised as ‘Level 1’ following brain injury or with other disabling conditions. This ‘Level 1 neuro rehab’ is provided in designated units.

CCG funded neuro rehabilitation

Where NHSE funded rehabilitation placement is not required, local core rehabilitation services are then considered. If these are deemed not appropriate a health or social care professional may refer the individual to the CCG ABI Lead (currently hosted within the West Sussex CHC Team) to consider if it would be appropriate to commission (find) an initial 12 week neuro rehab placement on behalf of the referred individual.

This funding is agreed on the basis of assessed clinical need and recommendation following Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) assessment, usually from within the acute sector. A review will typically take place at 8 weeks to assess progress and agree next steps.

Individual patients and their representatives work directly with the health professionals referring to this service and therefore do not have direct contact with the CCG until funding is agreed. Referring health and social care professionals however can contact the ABI specialist by emailing cwsccg.abi@nhs.net.

This service is available Monday to Friday 9am – 4.30pm with a response time within one week.

Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) useful tools

West Sussex ABI referral form

NHSE levels of specialist rehabilitation national framework

West Sussex ABI referral and review flowcharts