A scheme aimed at helping people to live independently at home for longer opened this month in South Tyneside.

Borrowdale House in South Shields, which was previously a sheltered housing facility, will now be used by people discharged from hospital who need additional support before going back home.

In addition to reablement therapy and assistive technology, people will also have access to personal care and support to help them recover and regain their independence.

Reablement therapy often involves an occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists, and social workers. It supports individuals to live independently and regain the skills to get dressed, shower or bathe, prepare meals, move around the house, participate in social activities and manage medication.

The move is in line with South Tyneside Council’s ‘home-first approach’ to adult social care following feedback from residents who said they wanted to live well at home, rather than go into residential care. It also enables the council to deliver on its ambition of helping to keep people healthy and well throughout their lives.

Councillor Ruth Berkley, Lead Member for Adults, Health and Independence, said: “This is about giving people the right support in the right place at the right time which will result in faster hospital discharges and better outcomes all round.

“We know from similar schemes at Thomas Bell House and Blenkinsop Court that when people are discharged to an enabling environment, they regain the skills needed for independent living far more easily.

“I would like to thank all the previous residents who moved out of Borrowdale House to allow this scheme to progress, it is much appreciated.”

Councils in England face a funding gap of £4 billion over the next two years, the Local Government Association (LGA) reveals.

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