A pioneering new pathway designed to speed up and improve the care that frail and elderly people receive has been put into place by EEAST and Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The ‘silver frailty line’ allows ambulance crews to speak to frailty nurse practitioners and consultants at the hospital to get expert advice so that residents can be treated in their own home or taken straight to a specialist ward, often bypassing the emergency department (ED).
Dr Tom Davis, Deputy CEO and Medical Director for the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) said:
“The Silver Frailty Line is a fantastic pathway for EEAST’s frontline staff to ensure that our patients can be treated in the most appropriate setting for their need and overall wellbeing, following discussion with Bedfordshire Hospital’s senior clinical support. This collaboration allows us to ensure patients accessing Urgent and Emergency Care (UEC) Services are not conveyed to the Emergency Department when a better course of action can be agreed. This ultimately improves patient flow through our acute hospital departments and eases pressure on our local UEC system, particularly at a time when the pressures of the pandemic are still being felt by all services.
This system integration is exactly how organisations across our ICS should be integrating to deliver more seamless services to patients”
Since the introduction of the new pathway, 53% of patients have been safely admitted into a specialist ward without having to wait in the ED first.