Working together to help people like Bill

At our last public board meeting we heard a heart-warming story about ‘Bill’, who had changed his life for the better thanks to a remarkable example of partnership working.

We have advocated for some time the benefits of working closely together and our future as a health and social care system in Bolton is certainly a collaborative one.

However, what stood out about Bill’s story was the massive impact this approach had made on an individual’s life and the willingness from not one, but several team members, to go the extra mile to help him.

Bill was in his 70s and suffered a traumatic head injury 30 years earlier, which had resulted in epilepsy.

He lived as a recluse and had let his property and his appearance deteriorate to the point where he only left the house after dark because he was embarrassed.

On one of his late night outings, Bill fell in the snow and had to attend A&E.

There he was seen by specialist teams who help prevent older patients from being admitted to hospital by ensuring they have the right package of care in place at home.

This prompted a home visit, where the extent of Bill’s living conditions and further health issues were revealed.

Reluctant to accept any help at first, Bill eventually came round to the idea of receiving treatment and allowing modifications to his home.

Thanks to the perseverance and patience of the following teams, Bill is now much happier, sociable and safer in his own home: Home First, Admissions Avoidance, Intermediate Care at Home, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Reablement, Meals on Wheels, Care and Repair and social work.

These teams engaged with Bill in a positive manner and were able to change his perceptions.

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