Out of hours support for tenants of sheltered accommodation
We are currently providing personal attendance for tenants out of hours if they need an ambulance and are investigating good practice or alternatives.
We are a small Council with 210 properties in 5 schemes which we renamed Independent Retirement Living from Sheltered Accommodation. There is an on site manager for each part of the day with the larger ones full time. Out of hours we have a duty officer (one of the scheme managers) who attends for an incident and covers all 5 schemes during this period. Staff have historically attended when our alarm service call an ambulance and historically they tended to turn up as the ambulance was leaving, secure the property and leave. This has now changed and it can be a number of hours before the ambulance arrives or this can be downgraded to a GP call during the night and staff are waiting over night with residents that have fallen. This impacts on availability of staff during the day. Does anyone know of an out of hours service that provides attendance to wait with residents or a falls service that could assist the resident and possibly remove the need for the ambulance. Our local NHS may be considering a response service (as this is actually health or Adult Social Care and not Housing) to triage and prioritise cases and so we would also be interested if this is in place in any other areas.
In my experience there are a couple of idea's that you could cost against benefit. They are:
1. Have a robust Falls policy that includes the use of a lifting cushion (i.e. manga camel (There is other products on the market), so that one 1 person is only needed) for the duty manager to use
2. following on from the above, have a dedicated team where there is a team that can respond to these calls with a lifting cushion.
There is a number of authorities that have set up their own dedicated teams with mixed results.
These teams have usually come under adult social care Dept, respite Dom carers ect
However, from a different approach some authorities have commissioned / utilised the fire service or first responders.
The London boroughs have some good experience. I will try to dig and find some evidence for you.
Thank you very much