Physios win praise for cutting hospital admissions

Physiotherapists in Cumbria have been praised for an initiative with social care, which has reduced the number of people who need to be admitted to hospital.

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Everybody loves a hero. Head of physiotherapy Helen McGahon receives her team’s award from trust chief executive Professor John Howarth

The physios at the Cumberland Infirmary were part of a number of specialist teams including palliative care, specialist dentistry, and diabetes whose work was recognised at a celebration event last month.

The team worked with social care staff from the local Eden Community Response Team to strengthen assessment and care in the community, so reducing the number of people who need to be admitted to hospital.

Helen McGahon, head of physiotherapy, said that, between July and September, 14 patients with complex discharge planning needs had rapid discharges back to their home with the Eden team providing the rehabilitation. She said that without this shared communication these patients would have been admitted to the acute wards while their discharge plans were devised.

‘Even if we assume these patients could be discharged in the (target) of 72 hours this is 42 bed days saved. The patients are where they want to be, at home, and they do not decondition which is preventing further complications.’

Professor John Howarth, the deputy chief executive at Cumbria Partnership NHS Trust and North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, presented staff with their certificates.
He said: ‘It’s important to pause and celebrate this work and events such as these are great for sharing best practice across teams – it has been fantastic to see the improvements for patients, and the great buzz among our teams for this improvement work.’

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