This year begins with new guidance concerning neurology as NICE released its latest Quality Standard, specifically around recognition and referral in those with a suspected neurological condition.

On 8th January, the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) brought out the new Quality Standard (QS198) which is relevant for assessing and referring both children and adults who have symptoms or signs associated with neurological conditions. 

It describes high-quality care in priority areas for improvement and details measurable processes and outcomes associated with each of the six quality statements. 

The statements are:

  1. Children under 12 years with headache and ‘red flag’ symptoms are referred immediately for neurological assessment.
  2. Children under 4 years with suspected abnormal head size or shape have their head circumference assessed using a standardised growth chart.
  3. Adults with suspected dystonia are referred for neurological assessment.
  4. Adults with transient rotational vertigo on head movement are assessed using the Hallpike manoeuvre.
  5. Adults diagnosed with a functional neurological disorder are supported to manage symptoms that are a part of the disorder in non-specialist care.
  6. Adults with suspected neurological conditions using NHS services experience care and treatment that is tailored to their needs and preferences.

Find the full Quality Standard and the associated interactive flowchart on NICE’s website.


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