Posted: Fri 14th Oct 2022

Team providing independence to people with learning disabilities up for top NHS award

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Oct 14th, 2022

A team that launched a new initiative in Flintshire to help people with a learning disability cope at home with their medication has been shortlisted for the NHS Wales Awards 2022. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The team is made up of staff from Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) and Flintshire County Council working in partnership to support people with a learning disability, living in their own homes, who need medication administering via a gastrostomy feeding tube. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The initiative supports education and training for care staff to safely and effectively administer medication via gastrostomy tubes. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

This helps those people who have a learning disability and a gastrostomy tube, live more independently at home and imposes less restrictions providing an improved quality of life, and gives nurses time to see more patients. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The team, shortlisted for NHS Wales Awards’ Improving Health and Wellbeing category, is led by Penny Bailey a Community Learning Disability Nurse from BCUHB, who has been the key coordinator for the success of the team approach. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Penny said: “I have worked with members of the multidisciplinary team, Flintshire County Council and Care Inspectorate Wales for several years, we have strived to attain this position where un-registered care staff could safely administer medication via gastrostomy for people within their own homes at home, including those who wish to move into their own home.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Historically, district nurses would visit to administer medication, which was not only restrictive for the person receiving it but also posed a risk if the person required critically timed medication.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“This led to launching the initiative for a developing safe governance framework for the administration of medication to be delegated to care staff who were already attending the home and caring for other aspects of the person’s needs.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Providing education and training both theoretical and practical aspects, care staff who are familiar with the person can become competent and confident to administer medication.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Through the nature of their role and interactions with the person, care staff are better placed to observe and report any concerns.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“The team approach has helped ensure people can stay independent in their own home and gives district nurses time back to visit more patients.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The BCUHB team also includes Paula Edwards, Jenni Wykes and Many Kerr, Nutritional Nurses, Zoe Scott and Mandy Lee-Evans, Out of Hours District Nurses, Kate Dymond, Dietitian, and Lisa Bradford, Medicines Management Nurse; Nicola Wakefield, Advanced Nurse Practitioner and Cherry Reid, District Nurse. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Flintshire Supported Living team includes Darren Rhodes, Team Manager Supported Domiciliary and Residential Services Learning Disabilities, and Mark Holt, Services Manager Resources and Regulated Services. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Flintshire’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Social Services and Wellbeing, Councillor Christine Jones, said: “I am delighted to see that this excellent initiative has been recognised and has been shortlisted for this award.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Flintshire is fully committed to providing quality services for people with learning disabilities and will always work with partners to make sure this happens.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“This is a great example of partnership working with our colleagues in health to ensure that our residents are able to live independently at home while receiving the health care they need.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The team is sharing the results of the initiative to promote the model of care with the aim of implementing it across North Wales. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health is up for four awards in this year’s NHS Wales Awards. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The community cardiology diagnostic vehicle has also been shortlisted for the Improving Health and Wellbeing, and for the ‘Empowering people to co-produce their care’ award BCUHB has been shortlisted for its new heart failure remote monitoring app and its Long Covid Lived Experience Partnership Group. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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