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Health Minister agrees to a meet to discuss the re-opening of hydrotherapy pools

Today (13 July 2021), Tom Randall MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Axial Spondyloarthritis questioned Minister Ed Argar, on the steps the government will take to support the timely re-opening of hydrotherapy pools and he said he would welcome a meeting on the issue.

During Minister’s Questions, Tom Randall called on the Minister for Health to support his call for robust plans to be put in place for the timely re-opening of hydrotherapy pools.

The session was held in the House of Commons and Mr Randall highlighted that for many people living with axial spondyloarthritis hydrotherapy is vital. He also highlighted concerns that the reopening of many of these pools following the pandemic is being jeopardised, with hospitals considering them low priority and allocating the space to other functions.

In response, Mr Argar said

“He (Tom Randall MP) raises an important point. The challenges imposed by infection control and the impact of the pandemic on hospitals has had an impact on this space. But I entirely recognise the value and importance of hydrotherapy as a treatment for conditions and I’d be delighted to meet him.”

Today’s question follows and APPG meeting in November 2020, that backed the development of a new campaign to call for hydrotherapy pools to be re-opened. The campaign, which will be launched later this year, will be led by NASS and is supported by organisations including AStretch, the Chartered Society for Physiotherapy, Aquatic Therapy Association of Chartered Physiotherapists, Swim England and a range of patient groups.

Dr Dale Webb, NASS CEO, said:

“Hydrotherapy is vital treatment for people living with axial SpA and a whole range of other conditions. For many people the sessions mean relief from pain and the freedom to do the things they enjoy, albeit temporary. Without hydrotherapy, too many people lose their independence and are locked out of life.

“We’re grateful to Tom Randall for raising such an important but overlooked issue today and welcome Ed Argar’s interest in the issue.”

You can view the questions and answer here, watch from 11.46:

About the National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society (NASS)

At NASS, we transform the diagnosis and care of people living with axial SpA. It’s an invisible and misdiagnosed condition. Often leaving people feeling powerless, in increasing pain and extreme exhaustion.

We campaign policy makers for early diagnosis and better services. We work with the NHS to get axial SpA identified and diagnosed quickly.

We’re determined that everyone receives effective care. We make sure people with axial SpA get the latest information and the support they need to tackle living with the condition. And we build an active community, online and through our local branches across the UK. We are with them all the way.