In the UK, residents seeking healthcare have the option of getting free treatment and support on the NHS, or going private. Both the NHS and private healthcare providers offer exemplary, world-leading care, with the NHS being the first port of call for most people due to it being the seemingly easiest route.
For neurological disorders, the NHS can and does provide excellent levels of treatment and care, but with increasing budget constraints, growing waiting lists and staffing shortages, more and more people are turning to private neurology clinics for treatment. Other people seek out private treatment because they have appropriate insurance which allows them to do so, and some people go private because of the access to newer technologies which often aren’t offered on the NHS for years.
There are lots of private neurologists working in the UK, with clinics up and down the country housing some of the best clinical neurologists in the world. When it comes to your health, going private gives you the chance to choose who you see and which medical professionals you are cared for by. In the same way you wouldn’t buy a car from the first dealership you visit, you shouldn’t halt your search for a private neurologist after speaking to the first one. There are plenty of neurologists for you to speak to, but you need to make sure they match your personal needs.
To help you find the right specialist for you, here are some things to look out for and consider on your search.
Reputation and experience in neurological disorders
The standard of healthcare in the UK is exemplary, but not all medical professionals have the same reputation and experience. A lot of neurological disorders cannot be cured, only managed, with the treatment method used being of paramount importance to the patient’s outcome. When looking for a private neurologist, make you explore the experience of each specialist, especially in the field of the condition you have.
Also look at their reputation and seek out testimonials and feedback from previous patients. This will give you an idea as to the approach they might take, the sort of treatments they may provide, and how they interact with their patients. Like any other service, word of mouth endorsements are incredibly important and telling when looking at which neurologist to consider for your treatment.
In the UK, to become a neurologist, a person must have undertaken a degree in medicine that is recognised by the General Medical Council (GMC). This should be followed by a general training Foundation Programme which spans two years. After this, four to six placements in different areas of medicine should be undertaken across two to three years. Then, speciality training is undertaken for a minimum of five years. After that, an application to the Royal College of Physicians can be made.
To check the credentials of a private neurologist, you can look at the GMC medical register or the Specialist Register.
Specialist field (e.g. movement disorders)
Neurological conditions are complex and can take a huge toll on a person’s wellbeing and health. Specialists are best placed to not only diagnose such conditions, but to offer advice and support on new treatments. At Dementech Neurosciences, our team of private neurologists encompasses specialists in several fields, including stroke and dementia. As an example, the treatment for motor neurone disease and multiple sclerosis differs greatly, so it’s important to find a consultant neurologist who specialises in your field and who is up to date with the latest advances.
Our consultant neurologists are involved in academic and clinical research, making them best placed to offer support and guidance on new and upcoming diagnostics and treatments. They are world-renowned experts recognised for excellence in their field, so you can rest assured you’re in good hands if you choose one of our neurology consultants to undertake your care.
Ideal clinic location
Managing a neurological condition is an ongoing situation which often requires the need for multiple appointments and tests. This is so your neurologist can see if there are any changes to your condition and whether a different course of treatment could be better. With this in mind, it’s important you factor in the location of the clinic your chosen neurologist works at.
Dementech is based on Wimpole Street in central London. It is served by a vast array of public transport which makes getting to and from the clinic exceptionally easy compared to others in more remote locations. If you’re close to or live in London, our neurologists are easily accessible, but if you live further away, we do offer remote appointments where possible. We aim to be as flexible as we can. We know that travelling with a neurological disorder can be tricky, which is why we offer telephone and video consultations where possible.
As a patient, it’s important you feel listened to and understood. The last thing you want to do is have to relay the same information to multiple clinicians because communication at their end isn’t great, especially where your medical history is concerned. You also need to make sure you understand and align with the way your neurologist communicates with you. This is a core part of finding the right care provider for you, as a lack of communication or poor communication can not only be frustrating, but it can lead to lapses in care, too, specifically where there is cognitive impairment present.
The final thing you need to consider when searching for a private neurologist is the facilities available at their clinic. Dementech is located in the heart of London’s medical district and is surrounded by world-leading facilities. We have access to the latest clinical trials and are among the first to adopt new technologies to our clinic. We provide a warm and comforting environment equipped with the latest software and medical equipment so our private neurologists can provide the best level of care possible.
When choosing a neurologist, make sure you attend the clinic and ask about the technologies and services offered, as well as the general facilities. It’s important you feel comfortable and relaxed during your appointments, so take this into consideration. Also look at other support offered – our leading consultant neurologists are supported by a multidisciplinary team including language therapists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, and psychologists. Our doctors work closely with the whole team to define the best treatment options and outstanding care across the board – specialist care is a team effort.
Private neurologists at Dementech Neurosciences
We understand that making the decision to choose a private neurologist is difficult. That’s why we implore you to contact us and ask everything you want to know about if you’re considering coming to Dementech Neurosciences for your neurological needs. We will be more than happy to offer further information as and when you need it, and we can book you in for an initial consultation within our private neurology service on the same day you call.