New look health scheme is re-launched

Care Plus, a scheme specifically designed to help care for frail people in the region, has been relaunched. Picture by Kevin Gibson Photography.
Care Plus, a scheme specifically designed to help care for frail people in the region, has been relaunched. Picture by Kevin Gibson Photography.
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A scheme to support elderly and frail people has been re-launched.

TyneHealth, comprising all 29 GP practices in North Tyneside, is joining forces with other services to improve the delivery of Care Plus across Whitley Bay and North Shields.

The new-look Care Plus brings together health care professionals, social care and voluntary services, so people are able to enjoy a better quality of life.

Patients registered with one of the participating surgeries may be referred into the scheme to help them maintain their independence so they can stay in their home.

Dr Hugo Minney, chief executive of TyneHealth, said: “Our GP practices are the centre of the communityand in many cases have cared for our patients for 30 years or more.

“We’re better placed to understand a person’s unique health care needs based on their very individual circumstances and medical history.

“With an aging population and lots of lifestyle diseases like heart failure, diabetes and respiratory conditions, it’s more important than ever before that people get the care they need to help them stay fit and well, and keep them independent.

“If hospital’s best for someone, then we want them to be there. But if we can improve their health and quality of life so much that they don’t need to go to hospital, then that’s even better.

“We’re bringing all of these different teams together so that people can live happier and healthier lives.”

The previous version of Care Plus was launched in July 2016.

Data obtained from the service showed that there were fewer visits to A&E, fewer admissions, and shorter stays in hospital because the service provided the right support at home.

Building on this success, TyneHealth, North Tyneside CCG and Age UK North Tyneside are re-launching Care Plus with some small but important changes.

Alma Caldwell, chief executive of Age UK North Tyneside, said: “Age UK North Tyneside is an integral part of Care Plus, providing support based upon a Care Plus user’s own self-set social and wellbeing goals, delivered by skilled coordinators and a team of dedicated volunteers.

“This elevates Care Plus above more traditional models of care by using the resources of the charitable and voluntary sector, not only to add a wealth of value to the service, but also to shape the service model utilising knowledge and experience gained by helping local older people to make more of life, which in turn supports individual health outcomes.”

Dr Minney added: “Care Plus is a very unique scheme and something we’re immensely proud to be able to offer our frailer patients.”

For more information about TyneHealth, visit www.tynehealth.org.uk