A new falls ‘pick-up’ service for adults in north east Essex who need to be lifted following a fall, got underway this month from Helpline 24/7.

The North East Essex Falls Service covers all adults, including those living in residential and nursing care homes, who need to be lifted following a fall with no serious injury. It provides an alternative referral route for the Ambulance service and other local partners, including social care workers and care home staff, to redirect 999 calls for non-injured, and minor injury, fallers. With ambulance services under increasing pressure and hospital admissions at record levels, the Falls Service will deliver a quicker response for local residents. In addition, the service can refer fallers for additional support and technology enabled care to help them live independently at home for longer.

The launch on 1 March 2023 follows the award of a three-year contract from the Suffolk and North East Essex Integrated Care Board (SNEEICB) to Colchester Amphora Trading Ltd (CATL), a company wholly owned by Colchester City Council.

Mark Shorter, Head of Transformation, Suffolk and North East Essex Integrated Care Board, said: “We are delighted to commission Helpline 24/7 which, over many years, has demonstrated its capability to deliver an excellent falls pick-up service. The further benefit of identifying support for people who may need extra help to remain independent, will help to improve and maintain the wellbeing of those who might otherwise be facing an uncertain future. We also expect this new contract to help ease the pressure on emergency ambulance teams through reduced callouts and subsequent hospital admissions.”

Cllr David King, Leader of Colchester City Council, said: “Congratulations to Helpline 24/7 for securing this significant contract. In working together like this, we are better placed to ease the pressures on NHS frontline staff and to help our residents. Falls are often very distressing for those affected and their families. It is great to know we can play a part in helping those affected across North Essex.

“This award is testament to the high standards and efficient delivery of our Helpline service and its dedicated team which has established such a strong reputation for quality and care amongst our users and health partners.”

Helpline 24/7 has been in operation across Colchester and north Essex for over 25 years. Its emergency alarm, response and monitoring service is relied upon by over 3,500 older and vulnerable people wishing to maintain their independence in their own homes.

For further information, including career opportunities with Helpline, visit: https://helplineplus.co.uk/

Photo credits: Colchester Amphora Trading Ltd