The Paramedic Home Visiting Service started in Waterlooville in June 2016. The aim of the pilot, which builds on an earlier project undertaken by Forest End Surgery, was to have paramedics carrying out home visits instead of GPs, therefore reducing A&E admissions, freeing up GPs for more complex cases and improve patient’s access to care.
Data so far suggests that the visits resulted in reduced GP visits, paramedics developed an increased level of awareness of local patients and there were cost savings in terms of reduced emergency transport and more.
The pilot was supported by South Central Ambulance Service (SCAS) who seconded a specialist nurse and specialist paramedic for over six months to provide a GP home visiting support service to six surgeries. In six months, over 500 patients were visited and only around ten to 20 patients were admitted to hospital following the visits.
Another area SCAS have been working with us is a care homes project in Fareham, Gosport and South East Hampshire where they looked at the reasons why care homes call emergency services and what can be done to reduce this. The team identified the top 20 care homes in these areas who were high callers to 999, but patients were not admitted. Care home staff were offered training on fall prevention, hydration and nutrition among other topics such as how to identify the early signs of issues affecting health. The project continues going well.