As part of our work to improve our county’s urgent and emergency care services, health and care organisations in Northamptonshire are working together to ensure those in need can acccess the right care in the right place at the right time – and so people in hospital are supported to return home as soon as they are well enough.

The new Age UK Northamptonshire team at KGH

Just one of the many projects supporting this work around the county is a new service to improve older people’s experience of being a patient at Kettering General Hospital – especially during busy times – which was launched in December.

The Age UK Northamptonshire Support Service is a team of paid support workers, and a co-ordinator, who will be working in the hospital’s A&E department, main ward blocks and discharge lounge. The new service is one of the most comprehensive services provided by Age UK charities at a hospital anywhere in the country and will complement the work done by KGH’s own volunteers.

The Age UK Northamptonshire team will support the hospital by helping patients with a wide variety of non-clinical tasks ranging from getting cups of tea, filling in forms, and providing activities for dementia patients, to taking people home in Age UK Northamptonshire minibuses and checking they have everything they need.

Age UK Northamptonshire Business Development Director, Sue Watts, said: “The new service will improve the patient experience at KGH by having specially-trained staff available to support the particular needs of older people.

“Coming into hospital can be a traumatic and confusing experience for some older people. Our support workers will be able to give patients that extra bit of time and support that busy clinical staff sometimes cannot provide straight away. These sorts of things can help prevent unnecessary admissions to hospital and also help speed up the discharge process for more vulnerable patients.”

You can read more about this project by visiting the Kettering General Hospital website.