Reshaping Care for Older People
9th November 2011
Almost 100 delegates from voluntary groups, carer support groups, independent care providers, NHS Highland and The Highland Council met last week (2nd November) in Inverness to plan how older people can be better cared for in their communities in the future.
The event had been arranged by the Highland Third Sector Partnership, a group of local organisations funded by the Scottish Government to support voluntary activity and volunteering. Its aim was to bring together people to consider how to implement the Change Plan for Reshaping Care for Older People.
The event was opened by Elaine Mead, Chief Executive of NHS Highland, and Bill Alexander, Director of Social Work for The Highland Council.
Elaine Mead explained that the way care is currently organised is not going to meet the needs of people of Highland going into the future.
She said: "We now need a real focus to understand different approaches as to how we keep people independent and in their own homes for as long as possible. We want to reduce the amount of times people are admitted to hospitals as emergencies, but when they do have to be admitted we want to reduce the time they need to stay in hospital.
"There are thousands and thousands of beds in Highland - in people's homes - and that is where we would like to keep them. But that poses many challenges not least how we make sure the right care is in place.
"Over the next few years we will use the money available to us from the Change Fund to think and work in different ways. This will include supporting communities to support themselves."
At a strategic level, NHS Highland and the Highland Council are in the process of carrying out a consultation to integrate health, social care and education services. This will deliver a more co-ordinated and responsive care.
Bill Alexander explained the Change Fund is not there to fund new services but to change how services are provided.
He said: "The £3.4 million available to Highland is not for funding new services but to really shift the balance of care from acute hospital settings to more local settings and ideally in their own home. This will mean we need to look quite differently about what support is in place to provide responsive services and ideally to support people in their own homes."
The Change Plan forms part of Highland's modernisation of community care services. It will build on existing work such as anticipatory care planning, work on reducing falls in older people and making sure we carry out regular reviews of what medicines people are taking. Getting these things right have all been shown to reduce the amount of time people spend in hospital.
Neil Sutherland, a member of the Highland Third Sector Partnership, who chaired the meeting, said: "This was a most successful day and we were delighted with the number of people who came and the range of organisations they represented.
"We asked for ideas about how they could work together as partners with NHS Highland in delivering care and other services for older people in the community.
"During the course of the afternoon, over 20 practical initiatives for specific services such as community transport, falls prevention and local care networks were identified. These will be developed over the coming months and the network of contacts made during the day strengthened."
During the day, the delegates heard from a range of speakers including those involved with work in Assynt (North West Sutherland) where communities are actively engaged in looking after their own people.
The clockis counting down until the 20th April registration deadline for the UK Parliamentary general election the Electoral Commission and Bill Gillies, Electoral Registration Officer for Highland and Western Isles is calling for anyone who isn't yet registered to go online and do so at www.gov.uk/registertovote before itâ€™s too late. The elections watchdog has been running a national media campaign reminding voters that they canâ€™t take part in the election unless they have registered.
Issued on behalf of the Returning Officer, Highland People who have applied for a postal vote in Highland for the UK Parliamentary General Election are being urged by the Returning Officer for Highland, Steve Barron to check that they receive their ballot paper. Voters who applied for a postal vote on or before Tuesday 7 April 2015 will be sent their postal ballot paper on Monday 20 April via first class post and should receive it no later than Tuesday 21 April.
Following the fire on Academy Street in Inverness the Multi Agency Response Team, which includes representatives from Police Scotland, The Highland Council, Inverness BID, Stagecoach, Structural Engineers and other partners has been put into effect. Structural information has been obtained which has confirmed that, due to its condition, the building the fire broke out in requires scaffolding to be erected around it to make it safe.
A total of 19 candidates are seeking election on Thursday 7 May in the three Highland UK Parliamentary General Election constituencies. Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross constituency has attracted 5 candidates; Ross Skye and Lochaber constituency, 7 candidates; and Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey constituency, 7 candidates.
The deadline for members of the public to share their views on The Highland Council's new Onshore Wind Energy Supplementary Guidance has been extended to Friday 22 May. Once approved, this guidance will be used for determining planning applications for wind energy development in Highland.
The Local Government Boundary Commission for Scotland has begun its consultation with councils on proposed wards for each council area as part of the 5th Reviews of Electoral Arrangements. Its proposals contain recommendations for councillor numbers in each of Scotland's 32 council areas and the number and boundaries of wards for the election of those councillors.
High Life Highland has unveiled expanded and improved facilities at Inverness Botanic Gardens. The new facility was officially declared open at a garland cutting ceremony by Provost of the City of Inverness, Councillor Alex Graham on Monday.
With assistance of a Grant from Historic Scotland, the Mackintosh Brothers have transformed their Dingwall newsagent's premises back to its former Victorian glory and the recent work is attracting very favourable comments from the local community. No 4 High Street, Dingwall is one of a series of Victorian shop premises at the West end of the High Street.
There was a good turn out to the recent public exhibition outlining the Phase 4 proposals for flood protection measures in Smithton and Culloden and the Council is reminding members of the public that there is still time for them to pass on their comments. During the drop-in event, which was held on 10 March in Smithton Free Church, The Highland Council and the scheme designer, JBA, presented works that have been undertaken in phase 1 to 3, to tackle issues and proposals for phase 4 were presented.
The Highland Council's Trading Standards team are warning local businesses about a scam that is currently doing the rounds and is targeting small businesses within the Highland area. A number of complaints have been received from local businesses receiving a letter headed "UK - DATA CONTROL - Missing information about your VAT Registration Number" with â€˜Scotland Business' prominently stated at the top of the first page.
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