Six month pilot launched to support people after hospital discharge

Islington residents who are discharged from hospital could get 22 hours of intensive help in their first week home to get them back on their feet.

By Julia Gregory, Local Democracy Reporter

Scrabble tiles spell out the word home care
Photo credit: Michael Havens on flickr used under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Islington Council launched a six month pilot for its seven day plan for people who might not need the six week reablement support package.

Initially the scheme is aimed at older residents, but the council is considering extending it to people with mental health conditions and disabilities.

Social services bosses were keen to stress it would not replace longer care for residents who need it. People with complex needs would still go straight onto the reablement support.

They told councillors at the adult social care scrutiny committee (JAN 31) the aim is to offer tailored care and more flexibility for residents.

It follows similar schemes in Gateshead and Haringey.

Director of social care Stephen Taylor said the intensive working can help people get their confidence and skills back and it can be easier to assess them at home rather than in hospital.

“We can go in, get people settled back into their own home and quite often that’s enough for people.”

He said the scheme will mean people get more face to face attention, with 22.5 hours of care over the seven days.

Studies of similar schemes have seen a reduction in homecare by 22% after one year and 30% after two years.

The council is considering whether to use external companies, run the scheme entirely in house or a mix of the two.

Residents getting care recently told councillors they sometimes see different people every day. They said it can be frustrating if they have to explain how they feel, having to undress in front of a different person every day.

Cllr Claire Zammit wanted to know what is being done to reduce this.

Mr Taylor said: “We are working to reduce the number of people residents see.”

Cllr Mick Gilgunn wanted assurance there are sufficient staff to cope with the intensive way of working.

He was told there was not a problem recruiting people and staffing on the seven day model need “less expertise” than for residents with more complex needs.

Social services will report back to the scrutiny committee about the pilot’s progress.

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