Age UK Solihull are pleased to announce the award of a 2 year contract to provide a Care Navigator Service on behalf of the Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group. This follows a successful 6 month pilot.The Care Navigator Service is aimed at older people aged 65+ and their carers who are registered with a Solihull GP, this includes out of borough patients but not Solihull residents if they're not registered with a Solihull GP.

Lucy Garratt, Head of Services at Age UK Solihull says, "We are delighted that the Care Navigator Service is to continue, it has proved vital in supporting older people to navigate our complex health and care systems and to maintaining good health and wellbeing.  It has also proved a vital resource for GPs and health professionals in supporting their patients with non-medical needs that are affecting their health and their use of health services.  The response during the 6 month pilot has been overwhelmingly positive from everyone that has been involved in the service, including the 500 patients and their carers who have received support." 

What is the Care Navigator Service?

The Care Navigator Service will support and enable older people primarily, but not exclusively, and find solutions to the problems/issues they face and will help them to navigate and access relavant services that can meet their needs. The service will provide a cost effective link between individuals, their GP and other health, social care, wellbeing and lifestyle services.

Care Navigators know about the many health and care services which offer support to older people so you don't have to and they also work with you so you have the tools, skills and knowledge to look after yourself and stay independent.

Who can use the Care Navigator Service?

  • Over 65s would benefit from the support of a Care Navigator
  • If you are registered with a Solihull GP
  • If you have given consent for the Care Navigator to access your medical records

How do I access the Care Navigator Service?

A Care Navigator will usually cover 3 GP Practices, and will have pre-arranged days/times when they are available at each practice. So, you can pop in and speak directly to them.

Your doctor may think that you could benefit from the support of the Care Navigator Service and can make a referral for you. The Care Navigator will then contact you to arrange to meet you.

Other health or social care professionals such as a District Nurse or Social Worker, can also refer you to the service.

You may also be referred by our Community Advice Hubs

How can a Care Navigator help me?

A Care Navigator can help you access services that can support you in many areas, for example:

  • Support with disability and long term health conditions
  • Help finding and choosing care and support
  • Support if you have communication needs or sensory loss
  • Help understanding housing choices
  • Safety and falls advice
  • Arranging aids and adaptations for your home including personal alarms
  • Finding clubs and activities
  • Support if you are a carer
  • Paying for care and support
  • Help to claim benefits and grants
  • Staying safe from abuse
  • Keeping warm in your home

If you are unsure if we can help, please ask.

What does this mean for GPs and the wider health and care system in Solihull?

  • Increased uptake of preventative services
  • Improved management of health conditions
  • Reduced demands on GP services
  • Improved uptake of outpatient and other appointments - reduced DNAs
  • Reduction in falls
  • Reduced A&E attendances
  • Reduced non-elective admissions
  • Reduced readmissions
  • Reduced demand on community nursing services, including rapid response
  • Reduced permanent admissions to care homes

Case Study: Mrs B

Mrs B is 83 and lives alone. She had a fall which resulted in a bang to the head, which she reported to her GP who then referred her to the Care Navigator Service.

The Care Navigator visited Mrs B at home and talked through some of the issues she was struggling with. Mrs B explained that she had fallen a few times but this latest fall worried her as she hurt her head and had problems getting up. She also felt she had lost her confidence to go out on her own and with family living far away, it became all the more difficult for her. This led to Mrs B feeling anxious, lonely and only had her daughter to speak to on the telephone.

After an initial conversation with her Care Navigator, the navigator carried out a falls assessment and found that Mrs B was also struggling with her eyesight and was shuffling when walking. 

From this the Care Navigator felt that Mrs B would benefit from attending Age UK Solihull's Postural Stability Instruction Classes to improve her stability and balance. They also discussed a pendant alarm with Mrs B and the benefits of being able to raise the alarm should she have another fall. Since Mrs B was struggling with doing tasks in her home, the care navigator also referred her to our Home Support Service.

This initial visit addressed immediate issues and a follow-up appointment was made to ensure all prevention and early intervention measures were in place, and to ensure referrals made been actioned by relavent organisations.

Mrs B's particular case had six weeks of support from our Care Navigator.  The outcome from Mrs B:

  • Felt better in being able to look after herself and manage daily tasks
  • Improved health and wellbeing
  • Feeling less anxious and low (no further calls to the GP)
  • More confident about the future.

Email: carenav@ageuksolihull.org.uk

Further information

Related topics