The City of Edinburgh Council and NHS Lothian worked collaboratively with carer organisations and carers themselves to redefine their strategic approach to commissioning support services for carers. The development of its three years Joint Carers Strategy for 2014-2017 involved using logic modelling to create a focus for consultation with carers on priorities and support required.
An increase in the number of Carers looking for information about benefits and /or money advice was identified.
A challenge for the project is to make sure that they reach as many Carers as possible to help them access the advice and assistance they need to navigate their way through the changes. The service aims to ensure Carers can access good quality and timely information in relation to financial matters which can help ease the uncertainty and stress that often accompanies these challenges.
An agreement was drawn up with three Care Homes within the Kilmarnock area for one room in each home for the purpose of rehabilitation. The steps up step down beds (as now named) have been purchased by local authority and change fund money. They will offer an alternative to hospital admission or an early supported discharge when the patient/service users can not be supported at home but are not unwell enough to stay in hospital. The care homes have embraced this service working closely with all concerned to ensure that the agreed outcomes are met.
Initially getting appropriate referrals was difficult as after assessment, we found we were able support the majority of service users/patients within their own home. At present we are working with the local GPS and Geriatricians to build up trust and confidence in this service so they will refer more complex cases that require the twenty four hour support from the team within the care home.