Partners continue to work closely together to ensure that the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent health and care system can manage increased demand for urgent and emergency care services over winter.
In support of this, national funding totalling £8.8m was announced in Autumn 2018 to fund two new modular wards at University Hospitals of North Midlands Trust (UHNM), with the first of these wards (32 beds) having opened on 24 January.
UHNM has this month launched the Frailty Falls Response Service that aims to assess, treat and prescribe for patients in their own home to prevent unnecessary A&E attendances. It involves an Advanced Nurse Practitioner and Occupational Therapist working alongside West Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust crews to attend low level 999/111 calls to determine if the patient has any acute needs. More information about this can be found via UHNM’s website here.
A separate pilot project involving West Midlands Ambulance Service, UHNM and Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (MPFT) went live on 28 January. For patients identified by WMAS crews as not needing to go to A&E, but still requiring urgent care, paramedics have been calling a dedicated phone line to determine whether alternative services are available. Short handover times for paramedics are paramount and this short-term pilot, lasting five days, will test alternative services to A&E and measure whether they are able to respond in a timely manner.
A base Clinical Assessment Service went live in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent December, meaning that patients calling 111 between 10am-6pm Monday to Friday will be able to access clinical support over the telephone if it is clinically required. The service has a senior clinical workforce, including Consultant-level Emergency Medical Doctors, GPs, Advanced Nurse Practitioners and prescribers. The aim is to ensure that patients are not passed around the system inappropriately and that where possible their call will be managed within the service.
For more information about the UEC programme, visit www.twbstaffsandstoke.org.uk/about-us/our-work/urgent-and-emergency-care.