By Chris Bishop
Monday, May 5, 2014
A housing association has been overseeing care for some patients when they leave hospital.
Health chiefs say the partnership with King’s Lynn-based Freebridge Community Housing, funded through NHS winter pressure monies, will help people leave hospital more quickly.
Ten people have been cared for under a pilot scheme, run with the West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group (WNCCG).
A mixture of calls or visits to the patient’s home, a 24-hour alarm service or assistance with receiving help from other agencies, such as Social Services, were all available to choose from.
Robert Clarke, director of housing at Freebridge, said: “This is a fantastic scheme to be involved with and it’s great to be working alongside West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group.
“This initiative offered people the chance to return to their own home from hospital much more quickly by putting in place a suitable and tailored care package – having the opportunity to do that is incredible.”
Last winter the West Norfolk health system was allocated just under £4m to fund initiatives which would help relieve pressure on the A&E department at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
The hospital was placed in measures last October by health watchdogs, because of low staffing levels, concern about its finances and failure to meet waiting targets.
A new alliance was launched last week, to increase the types of care being made available to people in their own homes.
Cathal Deane, head of community commissioning for WNCCG said: “We are pleased to have been able to support this pilot scheme which has helped local patients remain in the comfort of their own homes rather than have an extended stay in hospital.
“As a group we understand and actively promote partnership working and this pilot scheme is a prime example of what can be achieved when organisations work together. We hope we will be able to work with Freebridge on similar projects in the future.”