The East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership recently opened the Wellwynd Hub as a home safety resource to help older people keep active and independent, providing early intervention. Those visiting the Wellwynd Hub can try out therapeutic equipment to enable safety independence, community alarm and telecare equipment alongside other technology enabled care (TEC) solutions.
Wellwynd has an open referral system which means anyone is able to refer in to the service. People are required to do this by telephoning the Contact Centre on 01875 824309. The Call handler will take a detailed history and then will pass the referral to the appropriate team for processing.
This approach enables people to maintain independence and improve safety when living at home and getting about in the community. The approach used is a self-management approach which encourages people to take control of their own health and well-being by signposting and advising on
The Wellwynd Hub has been developed to allow people to try different solutions to see what works best for them in terms of keeping them active, independent and safe – therefore reducing risk of unintentional harm and injury. The idea initially developed following the Scottish Government drivers of: ‘Active and Independent Living Programme alongside the Health & Social Care Delivery programme. Early Intervention and Occupational Therapy are key in promoting independence.’ The need to embed Technology Enabled Care (TEC) and identify potential solutions following assessment has been highlighted at a Local and National level, such as the Health & Social Care Delivery Plan (2016) and Scotland's Digital Health and Care Strategy (2018). The initiative was seen as an ideal platform to deliver services in a different way whilst aligning with these drivers and national strategic objectives.
The aims of the initiative are:
The Wellwynd Hub currently consists of three delivery strands:
The Hub is fully equipped with adaptations and equipment which help towards maintaining independence and staying safe at home. These include a wet room, wash and dry toilet, adapted shower, bathing aids and a specially adapted kitchen. Supported by staff, people are able to see and test these aids as well find out more about Telecare and other TEC Care solutions, for example, motion sensors, bed sensors and community alarms. The Hub also demonstrates readily available products that people may already have in their homes such as voice-activated devices, smart TVs and lighting, and apps that control heating.
One of the first truly integrated pieces of work completed by East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership, working closely with Housing, Telecare, Technology Enabled Care, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy.
A successful funding bid to the Lothian Health Foundation (£5K) allowed the purchase non-core Allied Health Professional (AHP) equipment and SMART mainstream technology.
Cross partnership working was at times challenging, mainly due to access to budgets, different operating systems and in some cases different sets of priorities.
Efforts were made for some time to identify a suitable property where equipment could be demonstrated in working order.
Infrastructure in Wi-Fi accessibility was another challenge but was successfully resolved with the Hub now fully connected to the Internet.
There is a Test of Change for the Wellwynd Hub which monitors the activity of the Active and Independent living clinic and TEC awareness sessions. The information is recorded weekly as part of monitoring to inform the team of progress and changes required to improve and develop the clinics further. This is all part of a QI approach to managing a change in service delivery.
This information is collated and shared at the Health and Social Care Management group meetings. It is also discussed and shared at team briefings and the Wellwynd Hub is a standing agenda item on the Community Rehabilitation meeting.
One of several outcomes of the Test of Change is a permanent move to twice weekly clinics from 1 February 2019. This means that numbers accessing the service will double. Once these clients, where twice weekly clinics are available, have had their follow up review appointments we will measure outcomes and what improvements have been achieved in their lives.
An integrated approach to development of a new service is paramount from the outset. Inclusion from all parties and ensuring an equal voice is important.
The task in setting up the Hub was enormous and extremely time consuming.. If replicating this in other areas, we would recommend that this is not carried out as an ‘add on’ to a substantive post.
Health & Social Care Delivery Plan 2016
Active and Independent Living Programme
Digital Health & Social Care Strategy
Morven McLelland - Assistant Area Manager- firstname.lastname@example.org
Marie Gentles - Assistant Area Manager – email@example.com