THE Northern Suburbs Stroke Support Group has welcomed a Federal funding commitment.
Federal Labor announced if elected it would provide $16 million to the national Stroke Foundation for stroke awareness and survivor support.
Foundation chief executive Sharon McGowan said it would improve outcomes for the one in six Australians who will suffer a stroke in their lifetime.
“Thousands are living with the impact of stroke and this funding will go a long way towards improving community awareness and supporting stroke survivors to make their best recovery possible,” she said.
Funding will be used to promote the foundation’s FAST (face, arms, speech, time) campaign about recognising the signs of stroke and provide a follow up and referral service for stroke survivors and their families.
Group co-ordinator Sally Allen, who helps run meetings in Wanneroo and Quinns Rocks, said the prospective funding would be of “tremendous” benefit to all stroke victims.
“The community awareness of stroke must be encouraged,” she said.
“It is essential to be able to identify the signs and symptoms of stroke and the urgency of immediate hospital treatment.”
She said WA urgently required more hospital facilities for stroke patients and access to speech and physiotherapy services was extremely important.
“Since the closure of Shenton Park Rehabilitation Hospital it has been increasingly difficult for any stroke survivor in the northern suburbs to receive these essential services,” she said.
Labor candidate for Cowan Anne Aly visited the group, taking up the challenge of completing tasks using her less dominant hand to emphasise problems stroke victims face, and praised the “enormous sum” being pledged.
“This will not only help boost stroke awareness but help improve measures in terms of support for stroke survivors,” she said.
Cowan MHR Luke Simpkins said the Liberal Party had committed $600,000 to the foundation to update the National Stroke Clinical Guidelines.
“The Liberals are also working to improve co-ordinated primary care – we have already invested a guaranteed $120 million in rolling out the gold standard in co-ordinated care through our Health Care Homes model,” he said.