New early intervention vehicle starts in Great Yarmouth and Waveney

EIV training

Patients who suffer a fall in Great Yarmouth and Waveney are set to benefit from extra support from a new initiative which launched last week.

The early intervention vehicle (EIV) trial, which launched on 17th November, will see EEAST dispatch an emergency medical technician to patients who have fallen. They will be accompanied by an occupational therapist or physio from East Coast Community Healthcare (ECCH) or the James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (JPUH). The team will provide support to patients in their home with the aim of preventing a hospital admission or a trip to A&E, as well as making referrals for extra health and social care support where necessary. EIV staff will also provide equipment and offer help and guidance to avoid falls in the future, in turn improving people’s quality of life and reducing pressure on NHS resources.

The trial has been funded until 31st March 2018 with £130,000 from the Norfolk and Waveney Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP). It comes following the success of similar schemes taking place elsewhere in Norfolk, and has been developed by EEAST, ECCH, NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), JPUH, Great Yarmouth Borough Council, Waveney District Council, Suffolk County Council and Norfolk County Council.

Terry Hicks, EEAST Sector Head for Norfolk and Waveney, said: “We are delighted to be expanding this service to help patients in Great Yarmouth and Waveney. One in five of all 999 calls to the ambulance service are to patients who have suffered a fall and an emergency ambulance is not always required as a response. This project puts an alternative pathway in place so that they can stay at home by putting measures in place such as handrails, removing trip hazards and reviewing a patient’s medication.It will help to reduce unnecessary A&E admissions, helps to keep a patient at home where they feel comfortable, and reduces the likelihood of falling again in the future.”

Cath Byford, Director of Commissioning with NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We are really pleased that we have been able to work with our partners to trial this new service. Not only will the EIV ensure that people who have suffered a fall receive the best possible care, but will also mean they get the right help and support to stay in their own home wherever possible. “I am confident that this new initiative will help prevent falls over what we know will be a busy few months over winter.”

The service will operate at the weekends and on Fridays and Mondays from 7am to 7pm during periods of the highest demand.

Published 23rd November, 2017

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