Gravesham MP Adam Holloway saw the real difference the Virgin Care team at Gravesham Community Hospital are making to local people’s lives, when he visited earlier this month.
Adam was welcomed to Sapphire Ward by Head of Clinical Services Lee Busher, Inpatient Lead Linda Nurden and her team as well as Chief Executive Bart Johnson.
Adam met and talked with patients about their experiences and learnt about the support available to adults across the area. During his visit, he spent time speaking with colleagues working in the Care Coordination Centre based at the hospital.
The centre acts as the first point of contact for patients, carers, relatives and doctors in asking for help from all of the services which Virgin Care operate for the NHS in Dartford, Gravesham, Swanley and Swale. It was a key part of the programme of transformation of the services since the company took them on in September 2016 and has delivered results.
On average, calls are now answered by colleagues in less than a minute making it easier to access the service, and supporting people to manage their own health and stay living at home. The service means fewer people need to be admitted to hospital, and those who need to spend time on a ward can return home sooner and receive care at home instead.
It is widely recognised that time in hospital reduces independence, with community services like district nursing and rapid response nurses able to support people to remain more independent in their own homes, as well as saving the NHS money.
Lee Busher said: “We were really pleased to take Adam around our service at Gravesham Community Hospital, introducing him to colleagues and patients and showing him first hand the work we’re doing in our Care Coordination Centre.”
Adam Holloway MP said: “Community care is a really important part of the health and care system, so it was great to visit the local hospital and see the good work Virgin Care has done and continues to offer, especially how the care co-ordination centre is helping people access services more efficiently.”
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