Winchester and Chandler's Ford MP, Steve Brine, visited the Westholme residential nursing home in his constituency recently and saw for himself the new 'hub' facility which is helping to ease the pressure on acute beds in the Royal Hampshire County Hospital.
The new facility provides 12 beds which will be used for people who are discharged from local hospitals but are not able to return home straight away. This new model gives older people at the Hampshire County Council home, based on Harestock Road, up to 6 weeks, free of charge, to recover and rehabilitate and ensure a smooth transfer back home or into nursing care.
Steve Brine was shown around the home by Deputy Manager Lesley Brunt and Director of Operation Sharon Wilson. Speaking after the visit, he said: "This Winter has been very difficult for our NHS and Winchester wasn't immune from that with great pressures being felt at our local A&E department. I asked Hampshire at the time what the underlying problems were and not surprisingly, difficulty freeing up acute beds was a large part of that.
"I was really impressed with this 12-bed facility which I understand is one of six now operating in the county as it brings health and social care even closer together for the benefit of patients. Hospital is not the right place to make long-term decisions about future care and that's where this new hub really comes into its own. The challenge going forward is to give the hub a secure income stream so it is kept for the purpose it was intended when built."
Cllr Liz Fairhurst, HCC Executive member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, added: "This is one of many steps Hampshire County Council is taking to help ease pressure within the Hampshire hospital system."
Pictured; Steve Brine MP with Lesley Brunt and Sharon Wilson at Westholme
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