Somerset County Council and NHS Somerset are launching a new Community Equipment and Wheelchair Service to help people live more independently.
Previously running as two separate services, (a Community Equipment Service and separate Wheelchair Service) this new integrated provision will ensure that those requiring equipment for the home or a wheelchair to support them will experience a more joined up process and for professionals it will mean using only one system for all equipment requirements.
Launching on Monday 1 August, the new service will provide a range of equipment to help people live independently, offering loans to people for as long they need them. The service will also include delivery and fitting, servicing, collection, and recycling.
Following a competitive tender process, Medequip were awarded the five-year contract to provide the Community Equipment and Wheelchair Service for adults, children, and young people in Somerset.
Medequip will be working with AJM Healthcare, who will manage the Wheelchair and Ceiling Track Hoist Services.
Cllr Heather Shearer, Somerset County Council’s Executive Member for Adult Social Care said: “We’re really thrilled to announce the launch of this new service, which combines two services which previously people had to access separately. The new system will allow people to use one portal to access wheelchairs and also a range of community equipment, saving time, and making it easier for people to access the equipment they need. It will also make it easier for professionals to make referrals.”
“This newly integrated service is a great example of the deepening partnership between health and social care, and it’s wonderful to see NHS Somerset combining resources with the Council to provide the best possible service for the people of Somerset. We’re confident that this streamlined service is a sign of brilliant things to come! “
Shelagh Meldrum, Chief Nursing Officer for NHS Somerset said “It is positive to see us continuing to identify opportunities to work together with partners across the system which help us to jointly deliver services for the benefit of the people of Somerset.”
“This new service will not only deliver benefits to the people who need equipment to support them living more independently but it will also provide enhanced operational benefits for frontline staff, helping them to help our population more easily and efficiently.”
Michaela Harris, Medequip’s Regional General Manager for the South West added, “We are delighted to have been awarded the contract to deliver the Community Equipment and Wheelchair Service for Somerset, and look forward to working with the commissioning team and our service partners AJM Healthcare to deliver efficient, innovative and engaging services for the people of Somerset.”
Interested in helping people live more independently? Browse vacant social care roles at www.proudtocaresomerset.org.uk/jobs
Providers with job vacancies can submit these online by filling in a short form: Proud to Care – submit a new job role – Somerset County Council Find out more about this new service, including how to get a referral by visiting: https://www.somerset.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/equipment-to-help-you/
Medequip Assistive Technology is the leading provider of community equipment services to local authorities and the NHS across the UK
AJM Healthcare is the leading provider of NHS wheelchair services throughout the UK, specialising exclusively in wheelchair services.