A SCHEME allowing patients to leave hospital earlier and receive follow- up care at home is proving to be a major success.
Launched by the Countess of Chester as a one-year pilot, the initiative sees patients who have had emergency surgery or routine hip or knee operations and are well enough to be discharged early from hospital receiving daily home visits from the specially-formed Orthopeadic Outreach Team.
The team consists of a nurse co-coordinator, physiotherapist, occupa- tional therapist and three rehabilitation carers.
The help and care they offer ranges from helping to make a meal, assisting patients when getting out of bed and getting dressed in the morning, to continuous rehabilitation support to maximise a patient’s mobility and independence following surgery.
Alison Swanton, clinical lead for therapy services at the hospital trust, said: “This service not only benefits patients who are in hospital for a shorter time but it also frees up beds.
“It means that patients, once recovered from their operation, can receive their physiotherapy and occupational therapy at home and have the additional comfort of knowing they can receive extra support at home for making meals and getting dressed.”
During the first three months of the pilot scheme more than 57 patients from Chester, Ellesmere Port and Deeside benefited from the service. The team aims to save the equivalent of 700 bed days by the time the pilot is completed.