- Led by West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group, in partnership with Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust, and Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust.
- Aimed to address the unmet needs of children and young people in West Kent who use urgent care services most frequently.
- Introduced a holistic, de-medicalised, non-judgemental approach to caring for these children and young people.
- Delivered between July 2019 and October 2020.
Frequent use of urgent care by some patients puts a significant burden on the NHS, and suggests that the care needs of these patients are not being met.
This project led by West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group was designed to address the unmet needs (whether social, medical, psychological or emotional) of children and young people in West Kent who use urgent care services most frequently.
A similar service for adults in West Kent had already been successfully implemented. This was the first time children and young people had been the focus of this holistic, de-medicalised, non-judgemental approach.
The initial method envisaged for identifying patients for the service was through ED attendances and minor injury unit use. However, often the repeated numbers of attendances were due to follow-ups after one initial event. So the project team then began to work with GPs to identify patients, as they often have a more complete picture of individuals’ use of services.
A Paediatric Frequent Service User Manager (PFSUM) leads the service, providing families with a single point of contact. The PFSUM makes direct contact with the patient (or parent/guardian) and arranges to visit them. By carrying out a visit at home or another location, the PFSUM gives the patient as much time as they need, which builds rapport and uncovers much broader issues than can be addressed in a health care environment. The PFSUM co-ordinates care around the patient, bringing together multiple organisations and promoting collaborative working.
Continuous patient feedback has demonstrated that the service is having a positive impact on patients.
For more information about this project, please contact Laura Bottle, Programme Manager, Kent and Medway Clinical Commissioning Group