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Pilot scheme to improve patient care launched across Bradford District and Craven

The Red Bag Pathway, a new pilot scheme to improve the care vulnerable people get in hospital, has been launched across the Bradford District and Craven.

Over 100 health and social care professionals have signed up to the Red Bag Pathway pilot to ensure personal information and possessions remain close to a person if they’re admitted.

50 Care homes will initially be using the distinctive red bag for people going to hospital which will contain information about their health, medication and allergies as well as personal items like pyjamas and hearing aids.

The scheme is then planned to be rolled out across all care homes later in the year.

Red bag2

When people are picked up, paramedics and ambulance staff will be able to access their information quickly from the bag improving the communication and care amongst the different people and organisations.

Once the person is in the hospital, the bag provides a single, easily identifiable place to keep things that are precious to them, so that their details don’t get lost in transit.

The pilot scheme has initially been funded by the NHS Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) but is run in partnership with Bradford District NHS Foundation Care Trust, Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (BTHFT) and local care home providers.

Sohail Abbas, Clinical Lead for Bradford City CCG, said: “We support vulnerable people living in care homes, and elsewhere, to be healthy and happy at home. But there are times when they need to go in to hospital and, when they do, the Red Bag Pathway helps to make this a more positive experience, with better health outcomes.”

“It is a practical tool that keeps people’s belongings safe, as well as a simple and effective way to share critical information with health workers from different services so they can work effectively together as a team.”

“This helps communication between care home, ambulance, hospital and other staff and helps get people the care and treatment they need so they can come safely home as soon as possible.”

Andrea Gillespie, Nursing and Midwifery Quality Lead at BTHFT, said: “The Red Bag Scheme is tried and tested and delivers immediate health benefits to care home residents, and to other vulnerable people when they have to go into hospital.

“Having access to an individual’s medical information and care needs in this way means we can get on with delivering the health care they require sooner and more effectively.”

Karen Walker, Deputy Director of Nursing at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust said: “When a patient comes into the hospital, they may have already seen their local GP and ambulance staff. The red bag allows us to better understand the needs of the patient.

It also gives those people the comfort of having their own clothes and personal items to reassure them during their stay.”

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