Paramedic’s ‘light bulb moment’ saves the NHS more than £2 million

NHS England | May 2018 | Paramedic’s brainwave eases A&E pressures by keeping “frequent callers’ away

A senior  paramedic who noticed that a small number of patients used a lot of NHS resources and staff time came up with the idea to address their problems with an innovative programme. Rhian Monteith arranged a scheme where the frequent callers were able to meet for coffee and a chat.  The scheme The High Intensity User programme was innovated by Rhian who collaborated with other teams to compile  a list of 23 patients, many suffering from mental health problems or loneliness, who had visited A&E more than 700  times during the previous three months, mostly by ambulance. Through personal mentoring and one-to-one coaching, as well as getting them involved with community activities, the patients were encouraged to phone her rather than dial 999.

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Rhian helped A&E attendances, 999 calls and hospital admissions drop by about 90 per cent among the group.  The scheme was then scaled up to cover about 300 patients in Blackpool over the following three years, saving the NHS more than £2million. It has now been rolled out to around a fifth of the country with 36 local heath teams adopting the scheme. (Public Health England)

The full news story is at NHS England 

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