Members of the Integration Joint Board have praised staff for working together to deliver the first full year of the Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership.
They recently met to agree the annual report for the partnership, formed in February 2016 to bring together the full range of community health and social care needs into one service.
The three year strategic plan adopted by the Integration Joint Board (IJB) came with a commitment to reporting back each year on progress. The report celebrates a number of achievements.
Among them, progress that has been made to reduce the number of people who are delayed in hospital. Through a commitment to increasing care at home, falls prevention and a rehabilitation approach, progress has been made in getting people discharged from hospital earlier and avoid readmissions.
Another achievement praised in the report is the implementation of the Virtual Community Wards (VCW). This means that vulnerable people can be monitored regularly and an appropriate level of treatment and care provided to avoid hospital admission. More than 600 people have been supported at home this year by the VCW, when previously they would have been admitted to hospital.
Participatory budgeting has also been introduced across Aberdeenshire. This innovative approach brings communities together to decide the priorities in terms of new developments or projects and gives people a real sense of being involved in how money is spent in their area.
Cllr Anne Stirling, chairman of the Integration Joint Board, said: “We are extremely grateful to the staff on the ground who work incredibly hard in often very challenging circumstances.”