East London’s Homeless and Vulnerable Person Outreach Service and a dedicated team made up of the Bedfordshire based Specialist Learning Disability Service have both been nominated for the NHS Parliamentary Awards 2022 by their respective constituency MPs.
Bedford & Kempston Mohammed Yasin MP and MP for Hackney South and Shoreditch Dame Meg Hillier have put the services forward to be recognised nationally.
Each team will find out if they are the Regional winners in June, and if so, they automatically become national finalists with the winners announced on 6 July 2022.
The Bedfordshire based team nominated by Mr Yasin was formed in response to the pandemic.
They set out to protect people with a learning disability who are at greater risk of serious illness caused by coronavirus.
In 2021 staff from ELFTs Specialist Learning Disability Service worked fast to supplement the borough wide vaccination programme by targeting people with a learning disability. Working against tight timescales they used their expertise to ensure that scores of people across Bedford were vaccinated.
This greatly improved people’s quality of life and that of their families and carers who had been supporting people at home throughout the pandemic. The team also contributed to wider efforts and extended support to older adults in nursing homes and people in mental health provisions.
Nominated by Hackney MP Meg Hillier, the east London Outreach Service worked fast to respond to the COVID pandemic to support rough sleepers.
The nationwide effort to get every homeless person off the streets and into hostels or other temporary accommodation gave the Outreach Service an opportunity to make contact with previously hard to reach patients, allowing them to make rapid and effective health related interventions and so improve this client group’s quality of life.
This work developed into caring for Asylum Seekers placed in temporary hotel accommodation by the Home Office, which further developed to focus on refugees who are part of the Afghan resettlement scheme
The team have now had nearly 2000 encounters with people, successfully registered nearly 600 patients across all three boroughs with ELFT practices – all of whom are now able to access the care they need.
The Service has supported nearly 1000 registrations of members of families and children in City & Hackney and Tower Hamlets, over 500 of whom were part of the Afghan resettlement scheme.
Both services were delighted to find their applications for nomination had been accepted and look forward to the announcement of regional winners in June.