A COMPANY providing award-winning care to residents across Carmarthenshire has shown its work to the Welsh Government’s health minister.

Delta Wellbeing – which is based in Llanelli but is owned by Carmarthenshire County Council and covers the whole county – provides support to clients and their families to ensure that those residents can be at home rather than in hospital when hospital stays may not be the best option.

The service was vital for 73-year-old Diedre Bromham from Pontardawe during her recovery from a stroke.

She collapsed in a café in Llanelli and it was thought to be a fall. An ambulance was called and the Home First team saw the incident and went to assist. The paramedic – Lewis Jones – realised that it was a stroke and that Diedre needed to get to hospital quick. Delta Wellbeing providing the lifting equipment to get her up from the floor and into a wheelchair, as well as the transport to take her to Prince Philip Hospital for treatment.

She is now at home with her family and said: “It was frightening, but I heard Lewis’s voice telling me he was going to look after me, and he did, I felt safe. If they hadn’t have got me to hospital so quickly, it could have been so much worse.”

Welsh Government health minister Eluned Morgan visited the monitoring centre and met with members of the Home First Team.

Ms Morgan said: “What matters to older people in need of care and support is to be cared for in familiar surroundings with familiar people. They do not want to go to hospital unless this is really necessary.

“They are also less likely to lose their confidence and muscle strength, and less likely to pick up infections than in hospital.

“We are committed to driving change and transformation, and going further, faster to make sure more people can get the care and support they need at home or in their community. To enable this, learning about best practice needs to be shared across Wales.

“The Home First team in Carmarthenshire is a fantastic example of an integrated system which is delivering a radical, person-centred approach to wellbeing, care and support in the community. This is helping to avoid unnecessary admissions to hospital and reducing pathways of care delays across the region.”

Carmarthenshire County Council’s cabinet member for health and social services, Cllr Jane Tremlett, said: “Enabling patients to return home earlier from hospital settings and offering social care teams another tool to remotely support clients in the community allows for a more pro-active and preventative approach so where possible we can delay or even stop entry to these services.

“The Home First team provides a single point of access to ensure that people access the right part of the system, first time. This includes providing clinically safe alternatives to hospital where appropriate and supporting people to remain within their own homes with the right support.

“As part of this, Delta Wellbeing supports patients to return home from hospital by providing care support for a short period of time until reablement or long-term providers can be found. With staff based at the hospital, they work with the health board and the council’s social care teams to ensure patients can be discharged at the earliest opportunity by providing essential support to prevent avoidable hospital admissions, freeing up hospital bed capacity, releasing valuable staff time, maintaining patient flow and avoiding medically fit patients remaining in hospital for longer. This supports the patient to regain their strength and independence and remain at home for as long as possible.”