A partnership project supporting carers across Lincolnshire hospitals has been shortlisted in this year’s prestigious HSJ Awards.
The Lincolnshire Carers Service Widening the Reach initiative has made it into the final round of the System Led Support for Carers category of the national competition, for the way it supports patients, carers and staff across all United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) sites.
The project, which first started at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston back in June 2016, is a partnership service between ULHT and the Lincolnshire Carers Service, delivered by the Carers FIRST charity and Lincolnshire County Council’s (LCC) customer service centre, and has now extended its hospital offer across all four sites engaging with over 1,000 carers each year.
ULHT Deputy Chief Nurse Jennie Negus said: “This year has seen a staggering increase in entries from all over the NHS and wider healthcare industry, so to be shortlisted as part of this is a fantastic achievement.
“Our Trust is committed to ensuring our carers are identified and supported and working in partnership with Carers FIRST enables us to do this.
“In practice this means we do all we can to have the right information for carers so their needs can be assessed and supported just as the patients’ needs are.
“We have a carers’ policy which clearly states our commitment to carers to view them as expert partners, respecting, seeking and listening to their views; after all the carer will know the patient better than any one of us.
“Our Carers FIRST colleagues work with us and they are considered members of our hospital teams in their own right.
“We run carers surveys asking for feedback on the experience of our carers and we have an active programme of our wards and departments working towards the carers quality mark led by Lincolnshire-based charity Every-One.”
Malcolm Ryan, Carers FIRST operational services manager said: “Additional monies from the Better Care Fund has enabled Carers FIRST to widen its hospital offer across Lincolnshire.”
“The early identification and support of carers has resulted in them being better informed, more resilient and supported to continue in their caring role after their patients are discharged home from hospital.”
Project members will now travel to London on Tuesday 16 October to formally present their entry to a panel of judges, before attending the glittering HSJ Awards ceremony on Wednesday 21 November.