Milton Keynes spinal injuries charity lobbies MPs in Parliament

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A Milton Keynes-based charity for people with spinal injuries launched a new campaign in Parliament yesterday.

The Spinal injuries Association was seeking MP’s support of its new Strike a Cord campaign.

Members aim to ensure all spinal cord injured people receive the specialist treatment, care, rehabilitation and support they need to be fully integrated and empowered participants in society.

The charity, whose head office has been based in Oldbrook since 2005, believes that the quality healthcare and advice that Spinal Cord Injuries Centres provide makes a critical difference to peoples’ ability to live independent and fulfilling lives.

Jackie Telfer, a local supporter of the Spinal Injuries Association, rehabilitated in the National Spinal Cord Injuries Centre at Stoke Mandeville, after she became injured in a fall.

She said: “At the beginning, my spinal cord injury left me wondering how on earth I was going to cope with life post injury. The rehabilitation I received whilst I was at Stoke Mandeville provided me with the necessary skills I needed to get on with my life in the outside world.

“Rehabilitation enabled me to work out all of the things I was still able to do independently, helping me to understand that I would still be a valued member of society and giving me a huge boost to my self-confidence.”

But the Spinal Injuries Association have found that peoples’ access to these specialist rehabilitation services across the UK, has been hampered by shortage of beds, the loss of experienced staff and funding issues.

The association is urging MPs to support the Strike a Cord campaign seeks to ensure spinal cord injured people and to join the All Party Parliamentary Group on Spinal Cord Injury.

Sue Browning, chief executive Officer at the charity said: “63% of responses to our recent survey said that access to clinical expertise is the most important aspect of attending a Spinal Cord Injuries Centre. We must ensure that access to these centres and services improves. We urge MPs to back our Strike a Cord campaign and help increase the capacity of our Spinal Cord Injuries Centres.“

More information about the campaign is available at www.spinal.co.uk