The Marie Curie @ Northumbria service aims to increase the number of people being cared for in their place of choice and improve the way care is provided and coordinated between different hospital and community-based professionals and services.
As part of the new service, a ‘modern matron’ for palliative care and a team of nurses have been recruited to expand the hospital liaison service and support individuals with palliative care needs who are being treated in wards across the Trust’s hospitals.
Following discharge from hospital, the team will then visit a patient’s home within 24 hours to ensure a smooth transfer of care to community teams.
Later this year a new community team, incorporating a rapid response service, will be developed with the aim of reducing the number of unnecessary hospital admissions and supporting people to be treated in the community and at home.
Dr Paul Paes, Head of Service for Palliative Care at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We believe this is a unique partnership, and the first of its kind in the country. It is a first in the sense that it is a truly integrated and jointly managed, jointly funded and jointly badged service bringing the NHS and the voluntary sector together.
“Northumbria has invested significantly and creatively in palliative care to create the largest integrated palliative care service in the country. The focus of this partnership is to increase our capacity and quality of service by delivering more responsive services: an out of hours, rapid response service alongside new roles supporting families and following patients across service boundaries.”
Karen Torley, North East Divisional General Manager from Marie Curie, said: “This is a fantastic partnership and we’re really pleased to be working alongside Northumbria Healthcare to develop and deliver services for people with terminal illness.
“As the UK’s leading charity caring for people with terminal illness, we know the importance of working closely with local NHS boards to ensure the right care is put in place for people and their families. We look forward to working alongside Northumbria Healthcare to develop this service to ensure people have the best access to high quality care.”