Single handed care

Example of  what can be achieved

Able 2 have been conducting a Single handed Care Project in the London Borough of Hounslow now for the past 8 months and have so far saved the Borough in excess of £250,000.00 by reducing the number of Double handed care packages to Single handed care.  Feedback received from the clients themselves has been very positive, and although some were hesitant to change initially as this is what they felt comfortable with, they are now feeling the benefit of the one to one care that they are receiving as they accept that this is a more personal service.

The London Borough of Hounslow are extremely pleased with the results, as on top of the cost savings that they are seeing, due to the workshops that Able 2 has been delivering to Care Agencies and Hospital discharge teams they have also identified a significant reduction in the introduction of Double handed care packages, and they are now being received at the astonishing rate of 1% of any new care package.

How this can be achieved

Delivering a SHC project requires careful planning and the infrastructure for the delivery of the project needs to be established before the Assessment process starts

There are several components to the process and it is essential that all stakeholders are fully aware of the aims and objectives for the project which are:

ü  Achieve a better outcome for service users

ü  Effective use of resources

ü  Provide an equitable service

The basic principle of the project is that the MH reviews are not just about reducing the cost of care packages but ensuring that the care packages is appropriate.  Fundamentally it is about redirecting Community Care finance, reducing costs of certain care packages and thus being able to provide more.

There are established work practices that need to be challenged and changed, for example many providers will advise that their insurance company and internal policies stipulate two people to use a hoist.  This is not the case and the relevant number of carers is subject to an individual risk assessment, this is a fundamental principle within H&S Legislation.


At award of the Contract to provide the SHC project there are key activities to be completed:-

—  Confirm and define the operational procedures for the delivery of the project

—  It will define the inputs, outputs and outcomes to be achieved.

—  How cost benefits will be evaluated

—  This is fully agreed with the Authority to ensure we have interpreted their requirements accurately demonstrating effective methodology for delivery

The operational procedure will ensure that we can

—  Define roles and responsibilities of stakeholders within the project

—  Define and challenge levels of competency

—  Methods of communication and joint working

—  MH Assessment and Care plan to be used

—  Eligibility Criteria,

—  Equipment in stores    Ensure standard stock

—  Define the organisational challenges –particularly important to enable the principle/philosophy of the project to be disseminated to all as an integrated/expected practice 

Carer Competency 

The competency of carers undertaking the direct MH with the client is paramount and it is essential that they have a good level of knowledge and understanding of equipment.

Networking with Care Providers and establishing good working relationships is essential

We need to establish from Care providers

—  Competency of the carers

—  What level of training and support they receive

—  They have up to date working knowledge of equipment

—  Do they have MH Risk assessors and if so they are incorporated actively to enable them to support and train future carers in the appropriate use of equipment and techniques.

It is essential that prior to the commencement of the service, workshops are held to train and enhance carers knowledge of new equipment and new techniques that have been developed.  This ensures that as new equipment is provided it is familiar and they know how to use it, thus removing suspicions and concerns.  It also enhances the effective delivery of the reduced care plan where applicable.




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