27 Jun 2016
West London Mental Health NHS Trust (WLMHT) is delighted to be part of a new service which will support thousands of Londoners to remain safely at home, ensuring hospital admissions are only required for those that need them.
The innovative new community health service will also help people coming out of hospital to regain their independence by providing rehabilitation and social support in their own homes. This makes recovery quicker and less distressing for patients and their loved ones, and frees up additional resources by avoiding unnecessary admissions to hospital.
The service is being delivered by a partnership between local health and social care providers to provide intensive community support for patients in Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, and Hammersmith and Fulham. The new community services have been commissioned by Central London Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), together with the West London and Hammersmith & Fulham CCGs.
Carolyn Regan, chief executive of WLMHT, said: “This is great news, and recognition that our commitment to providing integrated health care in the community, and to working in partnership, is greatly valued by clinical commissioning groups. Providing physical and mental health care and social care to people in the community helps them to stay independent, in their own homes, close to their family and friends. In many cases we can ensure people only go into hospital when they absolutely need to. We will also be able to help those coming out of hospital to recover more quickly in their own homes.”
The new service will offer rapid responses to referrals from GPs and hospitals, and will take referrals seven days a week through a single point of referral. The patient and their usual GP will remain at the heart of their care. It means referrals flow from the GP with results and reports about the person flowing back to the GP. Intensive support is provided alongside primary care, reducing the need for patients to tell their story many times.
Dr Christopher Hilton, clinical lead for intermediate care at WLMHT, said “We’re excited to have been given this opportunity to build upon what we learned from working with CNWL and LCW delivering the successful Home ward service, launched in Ealing last year. Our model for integrating physical health, mental health and social care has been warmly received by referrers, patients and carers as responsive and innovative, and capable of reducing the need for hospital admissions. We look forward to evolving this through closer collaboration with primary care colleagues in the Triborough area”.
The successful partnership is led by Central & North West London NHS Foundation Trust (CNWL) and includes:
- West London Mental Health NHS Trust (WLMHT)
- London Central & West Unscheduled Care Collaborative (LCW)
- Central London Healthcare GP Federation
- London Medical Association GP Federation
Claire Murdoch, chief executive of lead partner CNWL, said: “This is great news. How very sensible it is for those of us already working on the ground in the Triborough to take this service on. We are a very practical partnership to make it easier for GPs to call on and receive feedback about. Patients should only notice the improved service, while the partners quietly get on with the job.”
Dr Simon Douglass, medical director for LCW said, “We now have an exciting opportunity to build on the previous excellent work led by Imperial and its partners to ensure our Community Independence Service develops into a service led by clinicians from the community. It will support patients to remain at home when they become ill, where it is safe to do so. We will continue to work closely with our colleagues in the acute hospitals: this will include safe and timely discharge from hospital back home for on-going support with your recovery provided by the Community Independence Service.”
All partners above will work closely with the three local authorities to provide joined up care.
The role of the three GP organisations is crucial to the success of the new service. One already runs 111, some urgent care centres and the majority of out of hours services in the area, and all have existing links to GP surgeries where much of the service will start and report to. 81 existing staff will be transferred to the new service (the TUPE process). The contract is valued at £31m.