Local Hospice Care charity Phyllis Tuckwell has recently made improvements to its community care and referrals systems, to ensure that those who need its services are able to access them quickly and easily.
The new referrals process is being managed by the charity’s Advice & Referral Team (ART) of Clinical Nurse Specialists and administrators, whom GPs can now contact directly via telephone or email, should they wish to refer a patient to Phyllis Tuckwell. The ART will manage referrals seven days a week and will be supported by a Rapid Response team, who will assist any patients requiring urgent help, with the aim of helping to avoid delays and reduce unnecessary hospital admissions.
As well as making the referrals process clearer and easier for patients and healthcare professionals, Phyllis Tuckwell has also introduced a new Community Locality Model, which will enable it to work more closely with GPs, care homes, district nurses and our two major hospitals. Around 85% of the care which Phyllis Tuckwell offers to patients and families who are living with an advanced or terminal illness is given outside of the charity’s In-Patient Unit, and care is increasingly provided in the community – in patients’ own homes or in care homes. This Locality Model focuses the charity’s care into two geographical areas, or localities, enabling its staff to develop partnership working with the Royal Surrey County Hospital in the east of its catchment area, and Frimley Park Hospital in the west, as well as with the GPs, care homes and district nursing teams in each area, to ensure that patients receive more effective and co-ordinated care.
Alongside this improved referrals process and Locality Model sits the charity’s ‘Living Well’ team, which offers treatment, advice and therapeutic support at the Hospice and Beacon Centre. After a holistic assessment by the multidisciplinary Living Well team, patients are directed to the appropriate help and support, which include wellbeing and rehabilitative groups, emotional support and complementary therapy, as well as continued symptom monitoring and medical advice.
“We are committed to delivering high quality, safe, responsive, patient-centred clinical services,” said Dr. Cate Seton-Jones, Medical Director at Phyllis Tuckwell. “The aim of this new, streamlined system is to increase patient flow and support our work with other local healthcare providers in a system-wide approach to help reduce unnecessary hospital admissions – supporting our vision of providing ‘Easy access to compassionate supportive and end of life care for patients and families in a place of their choice’.