Achievements in 2020/21

Social care standards

To provide safe care in the community for vulnerable and older people, health and social care services need to be fully joined up. The new social care standards published by the PRSB in Autumn 2020 are supporting this by enabling information sharing between health and social care services to support better personalised care for individuals. The standards cover five key areas including: 

  • ‘About me’ – the personal details that a person would like to be recorded about themselves 
  • health and care information shared in care homes 
  • information shared by local authorities 
  • referrals for community assessments for care and support after a hospital stay 
  • the urgent information needed when a person is transferred to hospital from a care home 

This information is vital for ensuring that the treating professionals have all the information they need about the person who is arriving for care, including the individual’s needs and wishes. (For example, they may have a ‘Do not attempt cardio-pulmonary resuscitation’ decision in place.) It means that professionals from different services can work together and provide seamless care and support for people who need it.  

Implementation of these standards is already underway. Prior to the publication of our standards, NHS South West London Clinical Commissioning Group had been using an initiative called the Red Bag, that keeps valuable information about a care home resident’s health and personal effects, such as eyeglasses, in one place so it is easily accessible to ambulance, hospital staff and care home staff upon a person’s return. With the support of the PRSB’s standard, the information has been digitised so it can be shared directly between systems and now covers 500 beds in the area. By having adequate and up to date information about a person’s wishes to hand, hospitals have seen an 11% reduction in emergency department attendances and an average of 1.5 days reduction in lengths of stay. There has also been a 12% reduction in ambulance conveyances and time savings for staff and care homes. The information shared from care homes to hospitals includes a person’s wishes for their care, meaning people are also experiencing better and more personalised support that is in line with their individual needs.  

Meanwhile the About Me standard is being implemented in Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust through its personal health and care information portal.  Sam Bergin- Goncalves co-led PRSB’s standards project and she has been working closely with the trust to trial the portal with the standard in place to ensure it can be rolled out more widely in the coming years.  

In addition to these successes, Nourish Care, who joined our Standards Partnership Scheme in early 2021 to support implementation, have become the first system supplier to achieve conformance with the personalised care and support plan standard. 

“This standardised information will help everyone involved in care to  access the information they need to help people to live the best possible lives they can.

From crucial information about medication and its effects, right through to daily goals and aspirations, it will help to ensure that everyone can be treated as an individual.”

Professor Adam Gordon

President Elect of British Geriatric Society, and PRSB clinical project lead