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New project to treat Norwich pensioners

PUBLISHED: 10:53 19 January 2010 | UPDATED: 07:33 02 July 2010

Dan Grimmer

Elderly people in Norwich or those who have a long-term condition may soon be treated at home or in a specially commissioned bed based at a nursing home as part of a new pilot project.

Elderly people in Norwich or those who have a long-term condition may soon be treated at home or in a specially commissioned bed based at a nursing home as part of a new pilot project.

NHS Norfolk is commissioning the Care Closer to Home project, which is designed to minimise unnecessary hospital admissions, and it has been put together by the Thorpewood Medical Group, based in Thorpe St Andrew

Patients who have had an exacerbation of a serious condition or long term condition, such as diabetes, or an infection which requires intravenous antibiotics, will be targeted.

Currently, patients with these conditions may have to be admitted to hospital for treatment. But under the pilot, patients who see their GP or nurse with one of the above conditions will instead be visited by a specialist nurse at home for treatment. For more serious cases, but those which do not require hospitalisation, patients would be admitted to a specially commissioned bed based in a local nursing home where they can receive medical help in a more homely environment while still avoiding a stay at hospital.

Stephen Edwards, managing partner from the Thorpewood Medical Group, who proposed this pilot to NHS Norfolk, said: “The Care Closer to Home pilot is designed to try and minimise the number of patients being sent to hospital with conditions which may be treatable at home or in a more local clinical setting.

“By being able to offer patients treatment away from hospital, such as in a nursing home or their own home, we will be able to offer patients treatment in a more suitable environment instead of having to send them to an acute hospital bed unnecessarily.”

The Care Closer to Home pilot will be available to all Thorpewood Medical Group patients from this week and run for 14 weeks.

The pilot is being supported by Norfolk County Council Adult Social Services, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and the East of England Ambulance Service.


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