Recognition continues for rapidly expanding HIU Project

HIU team web
Recognition continues for rapidly expanding HIU Project
10 October 2017

A joint project which has delivered positive outcomes for patients who are regularly admitted to hospital is expanding its service to reach even more people as it celebrates more prestigious award recognition.

The High Intensity Users (HIU) Project is delivered by a joint multi-disciplinary team from Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership NHS Trust (SSOTP) and University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust (UHNM).

The project was launched last year to help patients who are admitted to hospital on multiple occasions and have stays of over 40 days.

It has proved to be a huge success and has now been recognised with a nomination in the Acute, Community and/or Primary Care Services Redesign category at the 2017 HSJ Awards, the leading annual awards in the healthcare world.

The latest recognition follows a nomination at the HSJ Value Awards back in March and the team have also been asked to present at the NHS Acute Frailty Network national conference next year.

Gail Lowe, High Intensity Project Manager at SSOTP said: “It is great to get the recognition we are doing and thanks to the success so far we are now extending into Stafford County Hospital and are currently recruiting for a new member of staff to the team.

“We have got 103 patients on the project at the moment but our aim is to get up to 250. We started in January 2016 so we are in our second year now. In the first year of the project we saw a 73 per cent reduction in admissions and 83 per cent reduction in length of stay with these patients, as well as saving £640,000 for the health service in unnecessary admissions.

“This showed us that it is working and it is the right thing to do for patients and the health system as a whole.”

As well as delivering tangible benefits for high intensity patients by reducing the amount of admissions and bed days for that cohort, there is a knock-on benefit of alleviating hospital pressure and freeing up valuable beds for other patients as well.

Gail added: “It is about crossing all the organisational boundaries to get the right results for our patients. It is key that this is a joint initiative with UHNM. We act as a team between the two organisations coordinating intensive medical, nursing, therapy and social care input, which is sustained via a collaborative care plan.

“We look completely holistically at the patients in terms of what they need and involve them in the process. The patients are the experts on how they are doing so it is vital they are central to this, as well as relatives and carers.

“Our strength is that we gather knowledge and share the knowledge with other professionals and services to enable them to make decisions which lead to good outcomes.

“As a team we are a good mix of nursing, therapy and social care backgrounds so it is easy for us to promote multi-disciplinary working when our team is multi-disciplinary as well.”

The team presented to the HSJ Award judges earlier this month and will find out if they have won at a glittering award ceremony at the InterContinental London O2 on 22nd November 2017.