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Extra £1.5million to ease winter pressure

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An extra £1.5million will be provided for essential services this winter to further ease the pressure on health and social care services.

In a report to the council’s cabinet next week (Thursday December 6), members will be asked to approve plans to invest a one-off £1.5 million winter pressures grant from the government.

 

The grant will be used to boost initiatives, which are proving successful in easing the increasing demands on health and social care services.

But with a harsh winter forecast, which is expected to have a significant impact on patient flow through health and social care services, the grant will also be used to increase capacity across services.

 

Key areas of investment include increasing the amount of single-handed care and community equipment available, the number of social care assessors and the number of care hours available, plus enhancing weekend cover and staff training.

At the cabinet meeting, members will also receive an update on the continued upward trend in the success of existing schemes.

Figures from the last 12 months show that of the 995 people seen by the community response team at the hospital’s A&E department, 87 percent avoided an unnecessary stay in hospital and were given the support they needed to return home.

There has also been a 92 percent reduction in the delayed discharge of people who are medically fit but in need of social care support at home. This exceeds all targets set by NHS England.

Councillor John Martin, cabinet member for adult social care, said:

All of these initiatives combined are helping us to continue to meet the growing demands on social care and hospital services.
We now need to move beyond one off funding to government sustainability funding these valuable services.
The figures for the last 12 months speak for themselves. Our initiatives are working and are improving people’s experiences through the system. They are helping people avoid either an unnecessary stay in hospital or a delayed discharge, meaning hospital beds are free for those who need them most and we avoid bed-blocking the system.
But there is always more we can do and I’m really pleased we’re able to invest further over the winter period when services are at their most stretched.”

Ends

Notes to editors

  • Last year Dudley Council was awarded a one-off grant of £13.9million from the government’s Improved Better Care Fund to spend over three years to tackle some of the most pressing issues in health and adult social care
  • In this first year, the council committed to spending £7million introducing a package of measures to support older people to leave hospital or a ‘step-down’ setting as soon as they are medically fit