Care home residents in Thornton, Poulton and Over Wyre are receiving dedicated care to keep them healthy and out of hospital thanks to a new service being piloted in the area.
Six doctors’ practices in the area have come together to provide the new service to the area’s 500 care home residents with the aim of improving care for residents while giving them a better experience and quality of life.
And by working in collaboration with social services, out of hours health services, care home staff, mental health experts, charities such as Trinity Hospice and patients’ families, all care home residents receive co-ordinated care in the home to keep them as well as possible.
As part of the service, all residents receive an initial assessment in their care home with reviews every three months. They also receive a bespoke holistic care plan to make sure their health needs and wishes are met as well as chronic disease management and reviews of their medication.
Dr Wendy Ford, GP clinical lead for the project, said: “General practice is not designed to service chronic disease management in people’s homes and GPs do not currently have the time to proactively manage people’s conditions.
“This means GPs are often only able to provide a reactive service, dealing with medical complaints as and when they arise and meaning patients are more likely to end up in the hospital.
“By giving these residents better and more joined up care in their home we are already starting to see a reduction in hospital admissions and major savings through cutting down on wasted medicines.”
According to early figures, since its launch in January there have been 38 fewer unplanned hospital admissions of care home residents in the area compared with the same period in the previous year.
As well as keeping patients in their homes, this has saved the local NHS an estimated £95,000 in just six months, while reviews of patients’ medicines have saved £52,500 in unnecessary prescriptions.
Dr Tony Naughton, clinical chief officer for Fylde and Wyre CCG and a GP in Thornton, said: “As a CCG we have split Fylde and Wyre into four neighbourhoods, giving each individual area the opportunity to focus on their own unique health priorities.
“This project is a prime example of how well this model can work, with a number of practices working together to improve the health and wellbeing of elderly residents in their area.
“As part of our plans to deliver new models of care across Fylde and Wyre, we want to bring more care out of hospitals and into communities and we are hopeful this project can soon be replicated across other parts of the area.”