Night Support Service shake-up to be trialled in Duns

A ‘re-provisioning’ of through the night care provided by Scottish Borders Council, set to net a saving of almost £500k, is to be trialled in Berwickshire.
Councillor Tom Weatherston.Councillor Tom Weatherston.
Councillor Tom Weatherston.

The Night Support Service, operating from 10pm to 7.30am, currently provides planned care and support through the night and may include safety checks, assistance to bed and to the toilet.

The aim is to replace that service where appropriate with the introduction of alarms, bed sensors and door activation monitors and by a change in shift patterns from 8pm to midnight and 6am to 10am negate the need for overnight continence support.

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A recent Pathfinder trial of this approach proved successful in Peebles and now it is proposed to roll it out across the region.

The overall Tweeddale evaluation showed that service users experienced no adverse impact or increased risk as a result of the changes. They also reported that they benefited from not being disturbed throughout the night. Families were also supportive and raised no concerns.

Now SBC is to undertake a second month-long pathfinder pilot with current service users of the Night Support Service in the Duns area to enable further evaluation of the proposals.

Councillor Tom Weatherston, the council’s executive member for Social Work and Community Enhancement, said: “While the outcome of our initial pilot in Tweeddale confirmed that the changes worked well for service users, who found that the alternatives were equally effective in providing them with the support and reassurance required, we have listened to the feedback received as a result of the consultation.

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“The Duns pathfinder gives us another opportunity to assess how service users and family carers from a different locality respond to the proposals for re-provisioning our overnight care service.

“As was the case in Tweeddale, all service users will receive a detailed reassessment of their suitability to take part in the pilot. Any changes will be undertaken following full consultation and agreement with them and their family carers, and those who are assessed as not being suitable for the pathfinder will continue to receive the Night Support Service as per their existing care package.

“Upon conclusion of the additional pathfinder, a further consultation including good information, communication and engagement involving service users, family carers and staff will be undertaken. Lessons learned from the initial consultation will also be taken into account. Once the outcome is known, this will be shared with the Integration Joint Board to determine the next steps.

“We will ensure that service users and family carers are kept fully informed throughout the process, but would ask that they contact their care manager should they have any questions or concerns. Staff will also be kept up to date and can speak with their line manager should they have any queries.”

There will be no change to the service provided to anyone receiving the Night Support Service in other localities while the Duns pathfinder is undertaken.