St John’s and the Central PHO launched a new initiative on Wednesday 15 December for the communities of Otaki and Horowhenua with the aim of reducing unnecessary trips to the hospital emergency department. About 40 people attended the launch with local MP Nathan Guy and local GP John Sprunt doing the honours. The service started last week and already 24 people have been treated in their homes instead of going to the Emergency Dept.
This is a one year pilot, modeled on the very successful service in the rest of Kapiti, offers Otaki residents urgent community care via St John’s. There will be a single point of access for after hours medical care with an extended paramedic service 24 hours a day.
The St John’s Urgent Community care programme will provide care in the home for non emergency symptoms and will be supported by the GPs, District Nurses, MidCentral Health and other community providers. This kind of collaboration can provide great results for people as well as streamlining services offered
As John Sprunt says, ‘This project is great for patients. If you don’t need to go to Palmerston North’s’ Emergency Dept, you don’t need to find a way back! That has been a significant issue for many people. In addition it frees up the ED to do the things ED should do, which is look after serious medical and surgical problems.’
What’s more, the service is free.