STAFF at Arbroath Infirmary are celebrating after scooping an NHS Tayside award for developing a new scheme that aims to get elderly patients back in their communities more quickly.
Led by medicine for the elderly consultant Dr Douglas Lowdon, the project focuses on older people who have undergone emergency orthopaedic surgery in Ninewells Hospital, Dundee, due to a fall.
Doctors from Arbroath Infirmary then go to Ninewells and assess the patients so they can quickly be transferred to continue their recovery back in a facility closer to their home, such as Arbroath Infirmary.
And being in hospital in their home town means patients’ families are more likely to visit and the care provided is by a smaller team of nurses, which all helps speed up recovery times.
Dr Lowden, who divides his time between the Infirmary and Ninewells explained: “It is all about the staff in Angus working within Ninewells to get the patients back to Angus as soon as possible.
“Therefore they can get care from local staff and are closer to their families.
“And we’ve found the less time they have to spend in Ninewells, there are less patients going into care homes and less being re-admitted, which is a brilliant outcome.
“We hope this scheme can be rolled out across NHS Tayside and other departments such as the medicine directorate and surgical wards.”