Intermediate care for older people: Achieving excellence

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The United Kingdom, and especially England, has relatively few acute hospital beds. An rising number of those admitted to hospital are older and have increasingly complex conditions. Many of these people have frailty or functional impairment, and most need some rehabilitation after their acute illness or injury. Some could be supported at home after initial assessment at hospital or in their own homes.

Intermediate care services can deliver support outside of a hospital setting, potentially helping to speed up discharge, avoid some admissions, provide crucial rehabilitation to maximise independence and reduce the need for long-term care and support. But such models are not always funded or available. In this workshop we aim to explore ‘what good looks like’ in intermediate care services for older people.

About this workshop

This workshop was for clinicians and managers leading the delivery of acute hospital services for frail older people, as well as those in community health services, social care and the voluntary sector, who work closely with acute hospitals. It was also of interest to commissioners. Group size was limited to 35 to ensure good-quality, interactive discussions.

The one-day workshop focused on putting what we know works into practice and included contributions from experts and, most importantly, the space to design your own models of care, among peers and alongside experts.

In addition to sessions from David Oliver on ‘what good care looks like’ based on the paper, Making our health and care systems fit for an ageing population, we heard from a number of other speakers, including:

  • Bie Grobert, General Manager of Integrated Adult Services at NHS South Warwickshire Foundation Trust, alongside commissioning and social care partners, on how they worked together on discharge to assess, in-reach and re-ablement
  • Claire Holditch, Director of the NHS Benchmarking Network and Project Director of the National Audit of Intermediate Care on the results of the most recent Intermediate Care Audit
  • Ruth Williams, Clinical Directorate Lead, iCares Integrated Care Service, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust to share the trust’s experience of developing specialist community interventions for people with long-term conditions.

This workshop was part of a series on improving the experience for and care of older people.