Last week I was lucky enough to spend time, shadowing a community matron. We visited three patients – all living with complex health issues. I was talking to them about what kept them well and asked them all to reflect about the one thing they would most like to change. Whilst their situations were all very different, it was no surprise to me when they all said that they would like to get out and about more.
For one that meant investing in a mobility scooter – and building work to open up access on the drive way. For another, it was about regaining confidence to walk into town after a series of falls; something that the falls team could help with potentially. For another, it was finding the energy and drive to go out on the days when he was not having dialysis because it is so exhausting.
The ELC Programme has captured the stories of hundreds of people living with complex health issues and without fail, they tell us how they crave getting out and about more – fresh air, social connection and participating in activities they enjoy. It is really therapeutic and the more opportunities we can create for people with complex health issues to get out, the happier they feel and the better they will keep. That includes care home residents.
It will need some creative, strengths based thinking within our communities to make it happen. I am pretty sure that many people would be happy to support someone with mobility issues to get out and about if they knew they how to help.
It’s certainly something worth commissioners exploring further to improve outcomes …
If you would like to learn more about how The ELC Programme can help you understand what matters to people, please get in contact.