I understand that lipoedema can be a distressing and painful condition and can progress to cause fluid retention (lymphoedema) in the affected area. The combination of these symptoms can lead to reduced mobility and psychological issues, such as low self-esteem. I know that non-surgical treatments can sometimes be helpful as a form of pain relief.
I appreciate concerns about this and I know that liposuction is not generally available on the NHS. However, it may be possible to apply for funding for cases of lipoedema. As far as I am aware, there are no plans to change this. The recommendation of any particular treatment is a matter for discussion between a patient and their doctor.
I know that it is important to increase awareness of lipoedema and I am pleased that the Royal College of General Practitioners launched a lipoedema course in 2014, which was developed in partnership with Lipoedema UK.
I can assure you that NHS England is focused on a system-wide approach that aims to ensure improvements in outcomes for all individuals with long-term conditions. I am pleased that the Government is integrating and improving health and social care. Local authorities will also be given greater powers so they can raise up to £2 billion revenue for adult social care, supported by an extra £1.5 billion investment and an improved Better Care Fund. This will ensure that spending on social care would have risen in real terms by the end of the Parliament and protect the most vulnerable in society.