British Red Cross support scheme saves Ipswich Hospital 123 bed days

Sylvia Darby received care from the Red Cross when she came out of hospital.
Sylvia with Amy Kenny

Sylvia Darby received care from the Red Cross when she came out of hospital. Sylvia with Amy Kenny from the Red Cross. - Credit: Archant

A pilot scheme by The British Red Cross has saved Ipswich Hospital 123 bed days since its launch six weeks ago.

Sylvia Darby received care from the Red Cross when she came out of hospital. Sylvia with Amy Kenny f

Sylvia Darby received care from the Red Cross when she came out of hospital. Sylvia with Amy Kenny from the Red Cross. - Credit: Archant

The Admissions and Readmissions Avoidance Scheme (ARAS) offers 72-hours of intensive support to older people with low medical and social needs who might be vulnerable after illness, accident or a hospital stay.

Sylvia Darby, of Tudor Court, Ipswich, was helped by the ARAS team in December after six weeks of care for double pneumonia and pleurisy.

When she was released from Ipswich Hospital, Mrs Darby was assigned support worker Amy Kenny, who offered the 68-year-old practical and emotional support. “I picked her up some clothes, put the heating on, cleared the walk way and cleaned out her fridge”, Miss Kenny said.

The 22-year-old then collected Mrs Darby from the hospital, went shopping for her and stayed for a chat and a cup of tea.


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“It was wonderful, totally professional, you couldn’t have asked for any more”, Mrs Darby said.

“She was very caring and you do not feel like you are imposing on anyone.”

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The scheme is funded by the Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG and managed by Suffolk GP Federation. Referrals are made by the hospital and it works alongside the Red Cross ‘Support at Home’ service, which provides a less intensive six-week support service.

Mark Bradley, Red Cross health and social care manager for East Anglia, said in six weeks of operation the Red Cross teams had supported 42 people and saved Ipswich Hospial 123 bed days.

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