#CouldYouCare? - why caring should be considered the fourth emergency service

Care practitioner Lorna on one of her visits.

Care practitioner Lorna on one of her visits. - Credit: Archant

As part of our ongoing #CouldYouCare campaign, aimed at encouraging more people to become a professional carer, we speak to one of the county’s care practitioners to find out what she gets out of her role.

Care practitioner Lorna.

Care practitioner Lorna. - Credit: Archant

Lorna is a care practitioner working for one of Hertfordshire County Council’s lead providers, Care By Us. She’s been working in the industry for over 20 years and is passionate about the care industry and the service people like her are providing in our communities.

“I enjoy my job because I look after everybody like they’re a member of my family; that’s important.”

Lorna specifically works as a community facilitator in the Stevenage area and leads a team of specialist care at home care practitioners. The team’s aim is to support safe hospital discharges and get service users back into their own homes as soon as they’re well enough and to then provide them with the support they need to live independently in their own homes for as long as possible.

Her service users have all got individual challenges, whether that’s daily essential medication that must be taken or mobility issues – whatever they need; Lorna is fully trained to help and prepared for every eventuality.

Lorna said: “In my opinion, to care is the fourth emergency service, we’re the first point of contact for many of our customers and it’s our job to keep them safe and well.

“A lot of the work we do is around prevention, we’re supporting people to keep out of hospital and to get them home as quickly as we can because we know that people recover better at home.”

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Lorna works on a one-to-one basis with the service users to set enabling goals; together they set out what each person wants to achieve such as improving mobility, increasing independence with personal care, preparing meals and cooking, medication or accessing community groups and activities.

“I like the human contact, I like hearing clients stories, about the war and things – just hearing people’s history…it’s good diversity, it’s great!”

Lorna and her team help to prevent readmission to hospital where possible and so they work very closely with the integrated health and social work teams to support people’s care requirements even when their needs are more complex such as palliative care for those with a terminal diagnoses and end of life care.

Lorna herself has real personal experience of the importance of social health and care services, she explained: “My mother accessed some of the care services we provide; she loved the carers that supported her.

“Sadly she’s not with us any longer after passing away following a long illness, however she defied all medical predictions on her case and I’d like to think that we can put some of that down to the support of a fantastic social and health care and support team.”

Herts county council is supporting our #CouldYouCare campaign - search Herts Good Care for more information on how to make a career out of caring.

To find out about job opportunities as a carer in Herts, visit www.hertfordshirecarejobs24.co.uk

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