A Penarth pensioner who was too frightened of falling to walk unaided into her own kitchen is one of scores of patients who’ve been helped by a newly-expanded Seven-Days-a-Week Community Resource Health Team.
The team is unusual in the NHS in Wales because it operates at weekends and is tasked with supporting Cardiff and Vale residents in their own homes so that they can avoid long hospital stays.
The Penarth pensioner – Mary Jones – (who’d suffered a fall) says “I was terrified to do anything before the team came out to see me. It was the fear of falling that held me back but since working with the Community Resource Team I can now walk into my kitchen without using my frame which I never thought I would be able to do.”
Three of the teams work on a seven-day rota including weekends and bank holidays – a working pattern almost unique in the NHS in Wales, which is still a long way from getting anywhere near operating a “Seven Day NHS” – the target for NHS England.
In 2015 the Community Resource Teams dealt with a total of 2,000 patients with 245 patients being supported at weekends and bank holidays in their homes during the first 6 months – resulting in easing the pressure on hospital beds .
After being helped by the team the Penarth pensioner Mary Jones is now doing daily exercises at home to improve her fitness and confidence. She says “I can’t thank the team enough for their support.”