NICE puts physio at heart of intermediate care

Intermediate care teams must include a broad range of disciplines, including physiotherapy, says advice from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).


NICE recommends that physiotherapists discuss the aims and objectives of intermediate care with patients

In its latest recommendations, NICE says that people who have been ill or are leaving hospital should be assessed for intermediate care if it is likely that specific support and rehabilitation would improve their ability to live independently.

No one should be excluded from intermediate care because they have a particular condition, such as dementia, or because they live in prison, residential care or temporary accommodation.

NICE calls for reablement to be offered as a first option to people being considered for home care, if it could improve their independence.

For people with dementia, reablement should be offered to help them to maintain and improve their independence and wellbeing.

The guidance highlights the need to discuss the aims and objectives of intermediate care with individuals and to record these discussions.

Health professionals should offer a clear explanation to their patients that intermediate care is designed to help them to live more independently, achieve their own goals and have a better quality of life.

They should help patients to be aware that intermediate care works with existing support networks, including friends, family and carers. People should also know that taking an active part in their support can produce the best outcomes.

Other aspects of good intermediate care are to plan the care around the person. This will include assessing their ability to self-manage and agreeing goals which take into account how an individual is affected by their conditions or experiences.

Alongside its guidance, NICE has published resources designed to help healthcare professionals record and assess how of putting the latest recommendations into practice.

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