NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group launches ‘Quest for Quality in Care Homes’ initiative
Caring Times, September 2013
NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council (CMBC) are working in partnership with telehealthcare provider Tunstall Healthcare, to provide advanced telehealth and telecare to help support people with long-term conditions.
NHS Calderdale CCG has worked with service providers to develop a new model of care to increase the level of support in care homes and improve outcomes. The new model includes the development of a multi-disciplinary team which will be available to support and advise staff in care homes on the prevention and proactive management of the needs of older people, including fall prevention and medication management.
Part of the model focuses on the development of telehealth and telecare in 25 care homes, and will include what Tunstall describes as the UK’s largest deployment into care homes, claiming that by supporting the analysis and treatment of people with care needs, this will improve their quality of life, and offer additional support for carers and family members.
The programme is being implemented in two phases. Phase one is focusing on providing telecare solutions to 25 nursing and residential homes across the region.
Carl Stevenson, manager at Summerfield House nursing home in Halifax said: “The introduction of the telecare solution at Summerfield House will provide extra reassurance for our residents that staff will be alerted immediately, should they require assistance. The range of sensors gives telecare users the peace of mind that their needs are being monitored at all times.”
Phase two will expose a further 500 residents in care homes to telecare by early 2014. Recent studies have shown that emergency hospital admissions grew by 4% in Calderdale, between 2008 and 2011. The region’s new approach hopes to help avoid unnecessary hospitalisation through early intervention, management of risks and improved medicine compliance as well as supporting people with round the clock assistance.
Dr Steven Cleasby, clinical lead for care homes and safeguarding at NHS Calderdale CCG, said: “As part of our Commissioning Plan for 2012/13, we set out a clear objective to transform health within Calderdale by looking to improve patient care and safety, whiet also addressing some of the challenges faced by clinicians in primary care. Telehealth and telecare provides us with the opportunity to encourage self-management and better care and support. In turn this can help reduce costs on the NHS caused in part by unnecessary hospital and GP visits.
“Working with GPs, we have identified the opportunity to help people with long-term conditions, and to help better manage the risks of everyday living for local care home residents, reducing the pressure on services and enhancing quality of life.”
Calderdale Council’s cabinet member for adults, Health and Social Care, Cllr Bob Metcalfe, said: “Calderdale Council is very pleased and committed to be working in this partnership to provide more personal safeguarding and reassurance for both care residents and their families, with the introduction of telecare and telehealth in local care homes.”