Community Support Team Lead Jennie Devlin (left), with Support Workers Amy Scott-Woodhouse (centre) and Debbie Campbell (right)
In these challenging times, Highland Hospice staff have responded to change by adapting and innovating our services.
With day patients unable to visit the Hospice because of lockdown, our Day Therapy Unit has been exploring new ways to engage with patients online and looking at how use of new technology can support their transition from an Inverness-based Day Service to a Highland-wide Community Support Team.
Community Support Team Lead Jennie Devlin explains some of the changes that have been made:
“As well as receiving regular telephone support calls, community patients have really engaged with the new Zoom-based sessions we now offer, which include a weekly social group and creative sessions.
“Staff have been amazed at the willingness of our patients to give the new technology a go- and although people certainly miss having face-to-face contact with staff and with each other, it has been invaluable in allowing our services to continue during lockdown.
“Just last week we loaned one of our tablets to a patient, enabling him to access the internet by himself for the first time. After a few practice sessions with staff, he is now accessing group zoom sessions independently.
“Introducing people to digital technology has been a very positive experience, and will continue to be part of the range of support we offer. Patients who may be too frail to attend a service in person, or those living in more remote and rural settings, can now interact with Hospice staff or with other service users in groups over Zoom. This has been important in improving access to support.
“The change of name from Day Therapy to Community Support Team reflects this commitment to adapting and exploring new ways of supporting patients online, at home, and in communities across the Highlands.”