A report on the first year of the Wellbeing Service highlights the fact that it is delivering significant financial efficiencies by avoiding the need for hospital admissions and long-term residential care. At the same time, the service is helping local vulnerable people to live independently and safely in their own homes for longer and enhancing their wellbeing.
The Wellbeing Service provides person-centred support and access to a range of services, including Telecare home monitoring, “Stay Safe” response and “Home Safe” hospital discharge services. It is delivered by the consortium Lincs Independent Living Partnership (LILP) on behalf of Lincolnshire County Council in five of the seven districts of the county, excluding East Lindsey and North Kesteven, where similar services are available via the district councils.
The report, which was compiled by Rose Regeneration and commissioned by LILP, describes the Wellbeing Service as pioneering in terms of the range of people it can help (anyone over 18 may be eligible) and the manner of delivery (by a partnership of four established, local charities working together as one organisation under the LILP banner). The report addressed four key questions: whether the service has delivered against the contract; what stakeholders (from customers to health and social care organisations) think of it; what progress the service is making in terms of the number and range of people it supports and whether the service is value for money.
The report concludes that LILP’s approach is fully consistent with the council’s original plan, enhanced via a process of ongoing feedback, review and co-design to ensure delivery of an optimum service.
Moreover, the Wellbeing Service is proving popular with those who fund it, make referrals to it and use it, offering solutions tailored to an individual’s specific needs, managing down demand for statutory services, integrating provision and offering turnaround from referral to initial assessment of just 3 – 5 days. ‘The Wellbeing Service has been very kind and wonderful’, says one service user. ‘John, Generic Support Worker, needs a gold star’, says another.
The report states that, in its first year of operation, the Wellbeing Service has made a life-changing contribution to the 4,442 vulnerable people it has supported so far, including as many as 3,706 who were unlikely to have been supported under previous provision, such as people not living in social housing and those under 65 years of age.
Finally, the report confirms that the Wellbeing Service is delivering value for money. For example, the service has records of 60 instances where ambulance call outs and A & E attendance have been avoided, based on individuals’ case notes. At a cost of £349 per call out, this alone represents a saving of £20,940. An analysis of the service shows a social return of £4.15 each £1.00 invested in it. The report calculates that, if 5% of clients avoid one hospital stay and are able to remain in their own home for one extra year rather than in residential care, the savings would be more than £6,000,000.
Photo: Ivan Annibal (left), Rose Regeneration and Mick King, Agency Director, Lincolnshire Home Independence Agency at launch of report on Wellbeing Service