Beryl, aged 77, was being discharged from the RD&E Hospital following surgery. Although Beryl was not eligible for a social care package, the team in charge of her discharge were concerned about Beryl’s levels of anxiety, particularly on returning home alone. They, therefore, contacted Neighbourhood Friends to ask if they could help.
It was arranged that Janet, a Neighbourhood Friends volunteer, would collect Beryl from the ward and take her home on Saturday morning. On arrival, Janet helped Beryl to settle back in, made sure she had enough food and drink, and placed everything she needed within easy reach so that she didn’t have to overstretch.
Janet also unpacked Beryl’s bag, made her a cup of tea and stayed for a chat. On Sunday and Monday morning Janet called back in to see Beryl to make sure she was well and feeling less anxious. Through their conversation, Beryl mentioned she missed having company. Janet was able to arrange for a Care Navigator to visit Beryl to discuss options, which resulted in a volunteer visiting her on a weekly basis. As Beryl’s health started to improve they were able to go out; they now regularly attend a craft group together.

The Neighbourhood Friends intervention and volunteer support:

  • Improved the discharge pathway which ensured a hospital bed was available from 10.30am on the morning of discharge.
  • Provided a cost-saving to the system as hospital transport did not need to be used.
  • Reduced the risk of re-admission/falls by making sure everything was accessible in the home environment.
  • Offered reassurance through a follow-up visit that support would be available on a Sunday.
  • Helped, over a longer period, to reduce Beryl’s loneliness, improved her low mood and helped her to connect with her local community and make new friends.
  • Helped to reduce Beryl’s anxiety levels.

For more information about Neighbourhood Friends please contact t: 01392 824752