Helping vulnerable patients to stay safe at home

Helping vulnerable patients to stay safe at home

A new service is helping vulnerable people in West Lancashire to access equipment to help them stay safe at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Progress Lifeline service provides wireless devices, such as pendant alarms and fall detectors, that can be worn or placed in homes to detect situations that may be unsafe. It also offers an assisted lifted service that is triggered if a patient falls.

The service is being piloted for 12 weeks to support people shielding during COVID-19 to remain at home, facilitate safe hospital discharges, and to increase independence and confidence amongst vulnerable residents. Patients are able to access equipment within 24 hours of referral by a health professional.

Virgin Care, which runs adult community services in the district, has sourced and implemented the service on behalf of NHS West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

Michelle Lee, Managing Director of Virgin Care’s Lancashire services said: “It is really important that we support our most vulnerable residents at this time so we were pleased to be able to help bring this service to West Lancashire.

“It provides a simple, effective process to allow practitioners to refer patients for this telecare support from a reputable provider during this difficult time, helping to make a positive difference to people’s lives.”

Dr Dheraj Bisarya, local GP and GP executive lead at NHS West Lancashire CCG, said: “While we continually adapt to this new landscape that we find ourselves in now and for the foreseeable future, assistive technology is one key tool within our arsenal that we can use to help support our most vulnerable residents.

“What this means for our shielding and vulnerable residents is that they can be supported in their own homes with things such as pendant alarms and fall detectors, ensuring that they can remain safe and secure in the comfort of their own home.

“We are also exploring telecare and how this can be offered as part of the usual social care assessment, meaning that routine assessments can be by-passed during the pandemic to make the process more simple during this 12 week pilot period.”

This service runs alongside the existing council-commissioned assistive technology service, in order to support a wider group of people who are not eligible to be referred through the existing route.