Alcohol care teams will be developed in each health board and a national awareness campaign created as part of a series of new measures to tackle the rise in deaths caused by liver disease in Wales, Welsh Labour’s Deputy Health Minister Vaughan Gething has announced.
Backed by £2.4m in funding over the next three years, the measures will support the delivery of the Welsh Government’s Together for Health - Liver Disease Delivery Plan, which sets out how NHS Wales and its partners will work together to halt the rise in liver disease in Wales.
£1m will be invested to develop secondary care-based Alcohol Care Teams across Wales. This will enable the better management and appropriate intervention for those attending hospitals for alcohol-related reasons. The service will also help reduce alcohol-related re-admissions and to reduce demand on secondary care services.
£300,000 will be invested in a new campaign on liver health and preventing liver disease to further alleviate demand. Working with existing awareness campaigns on viral hepatitis, alcohol abuse and obesity, the new campaign will focus on raising public awareness of the risks caused by liver disease.
Other measures include:
- £300,000 to improve identification, testing and referral of those with early stage liver disease;
- £200,000 to establish a dedicated national leadership roles to work across health boards on the quality of liver services;
- £200,000 to develop new services, more efficient treatment pathways and improve standards of care;
- £150,000 to match-fund industry partnership projects to support the delivery plan;
- £150,000 will be invested to support the development of specialised services such as regional hepatocellular carcinoma services and national transplant pathways to improve liver transplantation rates.
The plan can be found here.