Press Release

News in Neath Port Talbot

Council’s new Homecare Rapid Response Team prepares for Christmas period

14 December 2016

Neath Port Talbot Council’s new Homecare Rapid Response Team (HRRT) is gearing up for its first Christmas.

Neath Port Talbot Council’s Homecare Rapid Response Team

The team will be out and about in the weeks leading up to Christmas to support people so that they can spend the festive season in their own homes. Just as importantly it is also vital that NPT Council plays its full part with NHS colleagues to prevent 'bed blocking' which can be a major problem at this time of year.

December is always a busy time for the health and care sectors, as hospitals work hard to get people home for Christmas.  The Council formed the HRRT earlier this year to provide short term, intensive support to people in their own homes.

The team does this by operating a fast response personal care service that is available seven days a week. They provide a ‘step down’ service for people who are medically fit to leave hospital, but need support at home, and personal care and support at home to people at risk of being admitted to hospital.

The service can be provided for up to three weeks whilst longer term arrangements are put into place. Since it was formed in July the HRRT has supported over 150 people.

For the HRRT and the Council’s regular Homecare Service Team, Christmas Day is just another working day where people are cared for at home with their family around them.

Rapid Response Team member, Eirlys Ryan, who is one of the staff who will be working over Christmas said:

“This job can be difficult at times, but it is also very rewarding, especially at this time of year when you are making calls to people who, without the support of the team, would have to spend Christmas in hospital.

“Although we provide a short term service, you still get to know the people you support and this personal sense of care makes the job very fulfilling."

Council Leader, Ali Thomas OBE said:

“We recognise that the Council has a part to play in working with the Health Board to ensure that older people are not in hospital unnecessarily. This year we set up the Homecare Rapid Response Team in a bid to support more people in their homes and help reduce the pressures placed on local health services.

“Given the choice, most people would want to spend the festive season in their own homes and the dedication of staff such as those in the HRRT and our regular Homecare Service means that the delivery of care doesn’t stop for Christmas. Their commitment to their work and the people they care for is commendable.

“Of course there are many other workers that we should acknowledge, both within the Council and in other vital sectors such as Health, the emergency services and charitable organisations who, for the good of others, will also be treating Christmas as just another working day.”