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The Acute Home Visiting Service has won the Primary Care or Community Service Redesign Initiative category at the HSJ Value Awards 2020. The innovative and value for money service was co-designed with GPs and Commissioners in Mid Nottinghamshire and is fully connected with the care patients get from their local practice and hospital.

This prestigious award is made in recognition of our outstanding contribution to delivering better services and driving better outcomes for patients in Mid Nottinghamshire (Mansfield, Ashfield Newark and Sherwood).

The initiative, which has been running for three years, provides a responsive and effective acute home visiting service for patients that helps prevent them attending A&E and relieves GP work load. Often visiting frail patients with complex needs, highly trained staff provide skilled clinical assessment and intervention, and work holistically with other professionals to ease patient’s condition.

Since the Acute Homes Visiting Services started, they’ve made over 24,000 visits, saving GPs over 15,000 hours (July 2020). They have supported patients to stay at home rather than go unnecessarily into hospital nearly 7,000 times, which has saved hospitals an estimated £8 million (July 2020). For the 631 referrals that were made to hospital during the pilot, each of those patients got into hospital earlier in the day which is a much better and less stressful outcome for them.

The HSJ judging panel, which is formed of a wide range of well-respected figures from across the UK healthcare community, felt that:

“…it is a hugely impressive service with a wide impact and spread. This winning team has very clear transformation ambition and a good deal of this need for change is recognisable in other parts of the country. The savings returned on the initial investment is impressive. This service demonstrates very well efficiencies that benefit commissioners, clinicians and most importantly, patients.”

John, a patient from Nottinghamshire recommends the service, saying,

“I was suffering, but I thought it was something my local surgery could handle. I’d been ill the week before and called 111, and they’d sent us to hospital. But this time I didn’t have to go anywhere – I was sorted out there and then. They did all the usual things you’d expect a doctor to do. With a quick exam and prescription, I was up and running again. I’ve said to friends what an excellent service I’ve got from PICS. I was very impressed.”

Lucy Dadge, chief commissioning officer at NHS Nottingham and Nottinghamshire CCG said:

“I am delighted the Acute Home Visiting Service has been recognised for their outstanding contribution to delivering better services in Mid Nottinghamshire. The initiative, which has been designed with GPs and Commissioners, provides a visiting service for patients who are acutely unwell at home. It has been proven to prevent patients from attending hospital as emergencies and also supports GPs in managing their workload. I would like to congratulate all those involved for the positive impact they are having on patients in providing this innovative and effective service.”​​

NHS Locality Director, David Ainsworth, described the impact of the service for commissioners:

“I’m delighted to see our home-grown service win national recognition which is so very well deserved. It’s been a pleasure to be part of a forward-thinking, multi-disciplinary team, working in partnership to design and deliver this innovative and efficient service. The service has provided real savings to commissioners, saved GPs time and released them to do other things. This award helps us share best practice and will hopefully enable this model to grow nationwide.”

Dr James Cusack, Clinical Director who commissioned the pilot, said:

“This award is great news and well deserved! We have benefitted hugely from this service. It has had a big impact on GP workload and has had a huge benefit to patients. Long may it continue!”

On being awarded this accolade, Alison Rounce, Managing Director from PICS comments:

“We are absolutely delighted to have been named as the winners in the Primary Care or Community Service Redesign Initiative category. It means a great deal to all our staff to be recognised in this way and we’re confident that the positive impact of this award will help to create a long-lasting legacy.

“This award will provide a tremendous boost to both staff and patients at PICS and with our partners in the GP surgeries and Nottinghamshire CCG, and I am sure it will bolster our efforts to develop and continually improve our services.”

Winners were announced on the HSJ Awards Twitter to their 7,000+ followers in September. For more information about the benefits for patients, visit: picsnhs.org.uk or follow us @pics_primary.