A trio of new health schemes have proven a success in Doncaster, helping to treat over 250 local people in their homes and in the community rather than face a lengthy and unnecessary visit to the hospital.
Commissioned by NHS Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), the innovative projects have been designed to help people having issues with their waterworks, specifically: catheter removal, acute urinary retention and lower urinary tract symptoms.
The pilots, developed in partnership with Rotherham, Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust (RDaSH), are focused on treating people in the community rather than in a hospital setting. By going into patients’ homes or seeing them in local health centres and practices, hospital stays are reduced, unnecessary admissions dodged and possible bed blockage avoided as a result.
The first pilot has helped to streamline the process of catheter removal. Prior to the introduction of the innovative project, patients with catheters would have to go into hospital for removal of the device, however with the introduction of the new service, this procedure can now be done safely in the community.
The same, homebound, outcome has also been achieved for those with acute urinary retention by the second scheme.
The third and final pilot has reduced the treatment period for those with lower urinary tract symptoms. In the past, this has meant a long-term referral from GPs to a specialist within the hospital. However, now a local specialist community nurse can screen, assess and treat using state-of-the-art technology, avoiding a hospital appointment.
With over 250 unnecessary hospital admissions avoided, the new projects will continue to operate until autumn when the CCG will make a decision whether or not to commission them permanently.
Dr Nick Tupper, CCG chair, said: “It’s important that we look at ways of how we can deliver innovative care in the community in a convenient way, cutting down on unnecessary hospital appointments and also freeing up space for those that need it most.”
Sarah Bee, RDaSH Continence Sister, said: “We’re looking at new ways of working to improve the service offered to the patient. We are also aiming to reduce hospital admissions. We have worked closely with the Urologists at Doncaster Royal Infirmary and Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group in developing these pathways”.