Frimley Park Hospital Care Home Forum

ContactDr Edward Wernick, GP, Dementia Lead, NHS North East Hampshire and Farnham CCG
Telephone08444 125 888
Address4 Downing Street, Farnham, Surrey, GU9 7PA

This project aims to improve the diagnosis and management of those with dementia or possible dementia who are resident in residential and nursing care homes.

In the health economy around Frimley Park Hospital there are a large number of nursing and residential care homes. Many have at least some residents with a diagnosis of dementia whilst others have residents without such a formal diagnosis and there are the homes where all residents have a dementia diagnosis. All residential and nursing homes need staff with the skills and knowledge to manage their residents to the highest possible standard and to understand and use the health and social care services that are available to their residents as effectively as possible.

At present there are a variety of networks and forums in Surrey and Hampshire which provide nursing and residential care homes with access to training programmes and events and opportunities to network with health and social care providers. However these have been provided across the county councils and have limited input from the health sector and have been focused on developing knowledge and skills rather than developing professional supportive links with the health system. Surrey Care Association is the main source of training and network opportunities in Surrey – all care homes are automatically members though not all avail themselves of the offered services. In Hampshire subsidized training and networking opportunities are provided by Hampshire County Council Partnership in Care Training (PaCT). Hampshire Care Association is a membership organization and supports and advocates on behalf of its members.

The proposition of this pilot is to develop a Care Home Forum for the nursing and residential care providers around Frimley Park Hospital – ie those whose residents would be admitted to Frimley Park Hospital if they need hospitalisation. To avoid duplication the proposal is that this Forum will signpost and promote access to the training and networking opportunities that Surrey and Hampshire social services make available through these other forums with the addition of content at the Forum guided by the local CCGs (NE Hampshire and Farnham CCG and Surrey Heath CCG).

The Forum will focus on:

  • developing understanding of the health system developments such as the virtual ward and telehealth and involving nursing and residential homes in these on going service developments
  • developing professional links that enables residential and nursing homes to make the best decisions about which part of the health system their residents need to access and to access these effectively
  • providing access to a wide range of education and training opportunities for all levels of staff, and
  • providing a multi-disciplinary forum to trouble shoot service issues as they arise.

We plan to run the Forum for 12 months and then assess the impact on the patterns of use of health services and knowledge of best practice management of those with dementia.

Anticipated outcomes

  • Increased knowledge and understanding of dementia among care home managers and their staff
  • Decreased unscheduled care admissions of dementia residents from care homes
  • Increased number of residents with formal diagnosis of dementia and appropriate care plans in place for these residents
  • Increased satisfaction with the services provided by the care home to a patient with dementia and their relatives/friends

Progress update

The Frimley System Care Home Forum has now held two meetings. The first meeting in June provided an introduction and building of relationships as well as shaping future forum topics. The second meeting at the beginning of September was very well attended. Important information on diabetes care, falls prevention and hydration plans was shared. There was also a valuable opportunity for care home staff to discuss admission and discharge issues with hospital staff. Actions were taken away to address key problems and issues to enable better working going forward. The next forum is in the diary as are additional study and education days around wound care. Feedback is good and the forum should continue to provide a good space for health and social care to learn from each other and improve the quality of care for people with dementia.