I attended the Crohn's and Colitis drop-in in Parliament because I wanted to find out more on how I can support the 500,000 people who are living with Crohn's and Colitis in the UK.
I really appreciated the opportunity to meet people living with IBD and understand more about the issues they are facing.
More than half a million people could be living with Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis in the UK, reducing the time to diagnosis is crucial for improving outcomes for these conditions.
I know that Crohn’s and Colitis UK has developed a symptom checker in partnership with GPs and patients. To date, 120,000 people have accessed the symptom checker and it is helping people to recognise when to contact the GP about symptoms that may be caused by Crohn’s, Colitis or Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).
To support faster diagnosis, new community diagnostic centres are providing more capacity for diagnostic tests and screening which will support healthcare professionals to diagnose diseases and conditions such as Crohn’s, Colitis and other inflammatory bowel conditions quicker.
In terms of the current struggle some face to get appointments locally, I know that improvements are already being made in the constituency. When I visited Hillingdon Hospital last week, I got to see how the Cerner electronic patient record system works, and its successful rollout across the Trust! I know this will help residents of UXSR cut the waiting list time.
NHS England is also developing evidence-based tools, including an IBD RightCare scenario to help improve diagnosis, treatment and awareness of both Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis. The tools will set out best practice about what high-quality care looks like at every point of the patient journey, including diagnosis.
Around 1 in 4 people with the condition are diagnosed before 30, during what should be the most productive years of their lives. As your local voice for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, I care about supporting those diagnosed with Crohn's and Colitis, and I support their campaigns.
Find out more here:
UK's North West London Local Network Crohn's & Colitis UK's North West London Local Network (crohnsandcolitis.org.uk)
Campaigns; Campaigns (crohnsandcolitis.org.uk)
Information on IBD is also available on the NHS website and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published the IBD quality standard.