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Staying healthy and independent

All our services aim to help you stay healthy and be as independent as possible. We have a range of services designed to meet lower-level social care needs, and these are available to everyone.

Prevention assessment team
The prevention assessment team (PAT) provides information and advice to people throughout the county, and directs people to appropriate services, to help them to stay safe and healthy and to continue living independently at home for as long as possible. The team is made up of our social care workers, nurses from Sussex Community Foundation NHS Trust and community support workers from Age UK West Sussex, Brighton and Hove and Guild Care.

The PAT normally work with people aged 18 and over who do not receive other specialist health or social care services and are able to act on the information and advice provided (or have someone who can do this on their behalf). The PAT can give you practical and emotional support over the phone, or they can visit you at home if this is essential. PAT nurses also help deliver the NHS Health Check programme. The PAT can:

• help you get the support you need to continue to live independently
• help you arrange occupational therapy equipment for your home, such as grab rails and equipment to help you use the bathroom and toilet
• refer you to our technology-enabled care provider to see if you need technology to support you at home (for example, falls detectors, emergency alert buttons and smoke alarms)
• put you in touch with agencies that can make sure you are receiving all the income you are entitled to and help you with practical activities such as shopping, cleaning and gardening
• advise you on keeping healthy, preventing falls, managing your medication and staying connected to front-line health services that can support you
• connect you to local community groups and activities that interest you.

West Sussex Wellbeing
West Sussex Wellbeing provides impartial advice and support to help you improve your health and wellbeing, including programmes that support you to manage your weight, be more active, stop smoking and drink less alcohol. Some support is provided one-to-one and some through group activities.

You can talk to the wellbeing advisers by phone or in person. You don’t need a referral from your GP or any other health professional to receive support from West Sussex Wellbeing.

For more information about the types of support available and the contact details of the six local Wellbeing Hubs in Adur and Worthing, Arun, Chichester, Crawley, Horsham and Mid Sussex, visit westsussexwellbeing.org.uk.

Community hub
In 2020, we worked with district and borough councils and voluntary- and community-sector organisations to set up a community hub to support residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. The hub continues to provide information and advice to support vulnerable people in the community and connects them with the most appropriate support for their situation. The hub also provides information on the latest COVID-19 guidance.

Please see the 'Useful contacts' page for contact details and to check for any change to these arrangements.

My Network
This network provides information, advice and support for people aged 16 years and over with a lifelong condition, including a learning disability or autism. It also gives people an opportunity for informal socialising, as well as structured activity sessions. Priority is given to people who have their own housing tenancy and do not receive social care funding from us.

Pathfinder West Sussex
Pathfinder West Sussex is a group of organisations that work together to support people with mental- health needs, and their carers, to improve their mental wellbeing. The organisations also help people to improve their physical health and wellbeing.

Carers Support West Sussex
We have a contract in place with this specialist organisation to provide a wide range of services for family and friend carers. These services include a carer’s helpline which provides information, advice and support, running a number of support groups, and producing a regular and detailed newsletter. They also carry out carer assessments on our behalf.

The organisation helps thousands of carers every year to access a whole range of support to meet their needs. This includes equipment to help people stay independent, a carer discount card scheme which is run in partnership with local businesses, and respite care and short breaks for carers.

Please see the 'Useful contacts' page for the contact details of each of the services listed above.

There is a wide range of equipment to support you to manage everyday tasks and stay independent. We can provide you with information and advice on where to get equipment to help you if you would like to buy this yourself. Or we can provide equipment to help with activities such as:

  • getting in and out of bed;
  • going to the toilet;
  • bathing; and
  • getting about at home.

We lend the equipment to you, free of charge, through the . The service is available to anyone who lives permanently in West Sussex, or who is registered with a West Sussex GP surgery. One of our staff will talk to you to identify what equipment you may need and will tell you what we have available.

For more information, contact our Adults’ CarePoint. Please see our contact details on the 'Contact us' page.

Occupational therapy and rehabilitation
Occupational therapy supports you to maintain and improve your independence , helping you make the most of your abilities and overcome any difficulties you may experience with daily activities. Occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants will be able to give you advice and information about the best ways to stay as independent as possible. They can support you to learn or relearn everyday skills, by showing you new ways of doing things, providing equipment or making arrangements to adapt your home.

You can ask for support by contacting our Adults’ CarePoint. Please see our contact details on the 'Contact us' page.

Community Reablement Service
To help you regain your independence, our occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants work alongside ECL staff to provide you with a short-term reablement programme in your own home. You may need this service after a stay in hospital or just because you have not been coping as well as you would like.

This service supports you to improve your confidence, strength and ability to carry out day-to-day activities such as:

• getting up from a chair, a bed or the toilet;
• getting washed and dressed;
• making hot drinks and meals;
• walking around your home; and
• walking out and about in your local community.

The service is free for the period of reablement your occupational therapist has identified that you need. If you still need support after the reablement programme ends, we will look into longer-term care and support arrangements to help you stay at home.

Supporting you to leave hospital – Discharge to Assess with Reablement Service
We provide a 24-hour service in a care home to support you to leave hospital while you continue your recovery and reablement to help you gain more independent living skills.

The staff in the care home include social care workers, occupational therapists and trained care staff. The service plays an important role in helping you to safely leave hospital as soon as possible and makes sure no long-term decisions about your care and support needs are made in hospital.

When you enter the service you will have an assessment of your needs and agree what you want to achieve, with the aim of returning to your home.

The service is free for the period of reablement that your occupational therapist has identified that you need.

For further information, read the information leaflet ‘Supporting you to leave hospital – Discharge to assess with reablement’. Please visit our website at westsussex.gov.uk and search under ‘Adults’ social care publications’ or contact our Adults’ CarePoint and ask for a copy.

Please see our contact details on the 'Contact us' page.

Last updated: 04 January 2024