An innovative partnership that helps keep vulnerable Burnham-On-Sea people in their own homes for longer has been shortlisted for an award from The Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE). 

Somerset Independence Plus is a partnership between Sedgemoor District Council, Mendip District Council, Somerset County Council and Somerset West and Taunton Councils offering a range of options to vulnerable people across Somerset to meet their housing related needs.

The service is a joined up approach across health, housing and social care that’s hosted by Sedgemoor District Council.

Somerset Independent Plus is aimed at keeping people as safe and independent as possible in their own homes. It offers practical light touch solutions such as small aids and equipment, minor works such as rails and ramping and larger works under a Disability Facilities Grant such as wet floor showers.

It also offers some support with filling out financial forms if the individual is unable to and can look at financial assistance that covers a number of improvements, adaptations or repairs that might need to be carried out on homes which are not care act eligible needs.

Under the Best Collaborative Working Initiative (public sector or third sector) category, the awards recognise the very best in local government frontline services. Following a rigorous round of judging, the finalist councils were announced on July 25th.

Speaking about the awards, APSE Chief Executive Paul O’Brien, said: “Local councils do great work but too often they are the unsung heroes of public services. These awards are about celebrating the hard work and achievements of frontline services, and the local government workforce delivering them.”

“These services and local initiatives make a real difference to local places and local people. Congratulations to all the finalists.”

The winners in each category will be announced in September. Somerset Independent Plus is an integrated service, delivered through partnership, to meet the needs of people with disabilities throughout Somerset.

56,060 people were admitted to hospital each year in Somerset as a result of an illness or accident in the home. 48,895 days were lost nationally through delayed hospital discharge waiting for equipment and adaptations from September 2017 – August 2018.

Bed blocking in Somerset increased from 14,495 to 25,527 days in 2016, costing the NHS £25,527,000 per year.


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