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Council's support for people to remain independent

22 February 2019

The wide range of ways the County Council helps people remain independent for as long as possible is highlighted in a new report.

Every day, Norfolk County Council spends £1m on adult social care, supporting around 14,000 people.  Due to the ageing population and the increasing number of people living with complex needs, the Council has a range of early help and prevention services to stop or delay the onset of major problems.

Councillor Bill Borrett, chairman of the adult social care committee, said: “Investing in early help and prevention is a win-win, for the public and for the Council and our NHS partners.

“It helps people to live independently for as long as possible and it is more cost-effective for us to tackle issues early.  For every £1 we invest in the Swifts and Night-owls service, for example, the health and social care system saves at least £3.51, by avoiding more complex and costly problems from developing.”

The Council’s strategy, known as promoting independence, aims to help people to look after themselves; to keep people well and recover their health; and to help them to live with complex health conditions.

Examples of the Council’s work include:

  • Development workers, who support or help create new community groups that can offer support – ranging from dementia friendly lunch clubs to men’s sheds
  • Backing the national Pub is the Hub scheme, through grants and funding to help pubs become the centre of community life.  Examples include the café at the Fox Inn, Garboldisham and the café project at the Three Horseshoes, Warham.  The next one – the Lodge Shop - is due to open in North Tuddenham on 12 March.
  • Support for carers, via the Council’s provider, Carers Matter Norfolk
  • Social prescribing – working with GPs, the Council’s customer service centre and early help hubs, people are signposted to activities provided by voluntary groups
  • Home-based reablement – Norfolk First Response provides intensive support and assessment, to help people adjust back to independent living at home, including after hospital treatment
  • Assistive technology, including fall detectors, which currently helps 7,000 households in Norfolk live independently
  • The 24-hour, free Swifts and Night-owls service, which helps people with urgent, unplanned needs that don’t require the emergency services – the service takes around 14,000 calls per year
  • TITAN travel training, which helps to give people with learning disabilities the skills and confidence to use public transport
  • Information and advice to help people live independently, including an improved Norfolk Community Directory

Another report highlights achievements over the last year. These include:

  • Expanding the home-based reablement service, to support around 7,000 people per year
  • Launching the accommodation-based reablement service, which provides 40 beds across the county
  • Creating 47 short-term care beds, for people who are in crisis, or discharged from hospital, to help plan support to enable them to regain independence
  • A carers’ charter, developed with carers, for carers, holding the council to account for a series of actions
  • Expansion of the assistive technology service

Both reports will be considered by the adult social care committee, which meets at 10am on Monday, 4 March.

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