Care in the community a step up

Central Bedfordshire Council has been working with Aragon Housing Association to create a new 'Step Up Step Down' service based in Wingfield Court - a sheltered housing scheme for older people in Ampthill.

It will provide a reablement service to help prevent customers being admitted to hospital or a care home (step up) or enable discharge from hospital prior to returning home (step down).

In 2011, the Greenacre 'Step Up Step Down' service opened in Dunstable and demonstrated the need for such intensive reablement services. The development at the Evergreen Service, Wingfield Court will provide a 'Step Up Step Down' reablement service to support Central Bedfordshire residents in the north of the area and in particular those in Ampthill, Flitwick and surrounding areas.

Cllr Carole Hegley, Executive Member for Social Care and Housing, said: “It is great to see the launch of the service which will support to reduce or delay numbers of admissions to hospitals and nursing residential care and provide more care in the community and closer to home.”

Aileen Evans, Aragon’s Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to be able to offer this service alongside Central Bedfordshire Council. By using our recently updated scheme and their expertise, we will be able to give users a better chance of staying out of hospital, and in turn ease the burden on the NHS.”

Evergreen Service will offer six en-suite rooms in a homely environment plus a small therapy room and galley kitchen. The individuals using the service will also benefit from existing communal areas within the sheltered housing scheme i.e. the lounge, dining area, laundry and office, maximising resources and promoting a cost effective service. Support from therapists, such as physiotherapists and occupational therapists will encourage people to return to independent living. It is anticipated that customers will remain at Evergreen for up to six weeks.

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