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Self-Care Hub in Kirklees

Kirklees Council has taken up the strategic challenge to develop a Self-Care Hub, making the best use of technology to support local citizens living with a variety of long-term health conditions (LTCs). With increasing pressure on budgets and time, some service users with a LTC may see professionals for as little as an hour a year. It is therefore important to facilitate more self-care by service users. But many of them simply can’t do this at present without support, and the Self-Care Hub aims to take the service user further on the journey than they could manage on their own, while still being supported by professionals when appropriate. It aims to shift the balance towards individual responsibility. Supported by Advanced Digital Innovation (UK) Ltd, and through an extensive consultation with potential users, service provider representatives and professional clinicians, Kirklees Council has developed the Self-Care Hub concept into a rich mix of facilities for educating and informing citizens, optimising access to available services, and encouraging and developing the abilities of citizens to take more responsibility to manage their care packages themselves. The service is being developed by a consortium of public health and NHS organisations in West Yorkshire and incorporates live information drawn down from national services such as NHS Choices. The Self-Care Hub is an online resource that helps people assess their own care needs, using an interactive Virtual Assistant to guide them through their options and create their own care plan. It acts as a signpost to information and a portal into health and social services, with the aim of minimising routine and straightforward caseload on professionals such as GPs and A&E where simple information can alleviate people’s needs through self-care. Overcoming trust and perception barriers is important, as is catering for differing levels of confidence, so algorithms ensure that the right questions are asked, using self-compassionate language. Self-assessments can signpost users to tailored options, make an appointment with a Health Trainer, download an app, learn a new skill, or link to a social network. Links to other services in the council, CCG and secondary care complete the all-round provision of the Hub. The goal is to give confidence to people on self-care journeys. Self-care journeys will be measured with evidence-based tools, and users can monitor their own progress; professionals and informal carers will also be able to access metrics where appropriate to assist in the journey. It is expected that over time, professionals will adapt the way they work, building self-care journeys into their workflows, enabling more service-user involvement. The Self-Care Hub may be expanded to offer users holding their own records (PHR), online or video and telephone access to clinicians, and online access to the information held about them on professional systems. The concept and tools could be adapted for use outside Kirklees, potentially both enhancing the business case for further developing the Hub, and reducing the cost of similar provision elsewhere in England. The service goes live from summer 2014.

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International Journal of Integrated Care (IJIC)
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A9h academic search complete - exported 11/7/2016
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