Home to Decide! How Brenda benefitted

Featured article - 28 November 2017
Ann Taylor, Chief Executive Officer, Hilton Nursing Partners

Head-shot of the author, Ann Taylor, Chief Executive Officer, Hilton Nursing Partners

The Home to Decide service was developed from my personal experience as a family member focusing on the difficulties within an acute hospital. This all happened when attempting to link with social care and the independent provider sector. It was clear to me that although everyone in the system has the patient’s best interest at heart, the reality for the patient and their family is often frustration and confusion.

Hilton’s Home to Decide unique model of support was born out of such frustration. Although deemed ‘medically fit’ most elderly frail people do not feel emotionally fit after an acute hospital stay and aren’t in the best position to make major decisions such as moving into a care home or even a rehab bed for ‘a few weeks’. Home to Decide provides support from a multi-disciplinary team, led by a nurse and including healthcare assistants and an occupational therapist at this time. The pilot is funded by the Better Care Fund.

Brenda’s story is typical. Brenda had been assessed as requiring residential care while in hospital, but both she and her family thought that she would be better placed living at home. The team helped Brenda regain physical and emotional strength. Initially, the Hilton team were with Brenda 24 hours a day, but within three days the team recognised the need to allow her the space to reclaim her independence. Brenda was happy for the night sits to end, in the knowledge that support was always just a phone call away. As Brenda’s confidence and mobility improved, the team agreed a gradual reduction in calls with her, to two calls per day by day ten.

What happened to Brenda

Brenda’s story represents a positive outcome, not only for Brenda herself but for the acute hospital where she waited for over seven weeks, and for the Social Service team who couldn’t see any alternative as she became even more anxious daily.

And the financial angle; well, Brenda staying at home saves an estimated £20,800 per year.

While not every patient can be recovered sufficiently to continue to live at home, the Kent pilot is assisting us in defining the criteria that are more likely to lead to successful outcomes.

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