There are currently 10 community hospitals in Cumbria. The hospitals range from 4-16 beds and provide a range of different services depending upon their location.
Recruitment and retention has been problematic for some of the community hospitals. As such, the Cumbria Success Regime (CSR) engage the WRaPT Team to help model the impact of how consolidating hospital sites and transferring care into the community would impact on the workforce
The WRaPT team based their approach on the standard WRaPT process and methodology. We:
Defined the question that we needed to model. This was to model the impact of consolidating the bed base in sites of 16, 24 and 32 bedded units.
Determined the most appropriate activity data. In this case bed days.
Performed a workforce review with the service leads to understand how best to align activity data with staff. This resulted in further work to determine the proportion of patients whose care could be safely shifted into the community.
Placed the data in the WRaPT tool and presented the outputs for the CSR.
The WRaPT data driven approach to modelling identified a range of benefits through the consolidation of the community hospitals:
WRaPT found bringing the hospitals together would result in a significant reduction in problems with recruitment as it would be more efficient to deliver care for the same number of patients on fewer sites.
WRaPT identified a financial saving of up to 20% (circa £2m) via reduction in premium pay staff and a change in skill mix.
The outcomes informed the pre-consultation business case. They was also used to inform discussions at workshops as part of the success regime process
“ WRaPT has facilitated productive engagement across many areas of community services.”
Emma Russel, Service Lead for Community Hospitals, Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
Over the last few years England has been experiencing increasing demands on its urgent and emergency care services which has put unprecedented pressures on the NHS and its workforce. NHS England has commissioned a review into Urgent and Emergency Care which Health Education England (HEE) is supporting through its Emergency Medicine Workforce Implementation Group (EMWIG) and supporting programmes.
The West Cumberland Hospital (WCH) of North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust has been struggling with issues regarding the recruitment and retention of acute Medical Registrars for a number of years. This has led to a situation where all the out of hours acute medical senior decision maker cover has been provided using premium pay staff.