The managers at my DGH have taken an usual step by hiring, for a 6 month trial, a psychologist and a social prescribing link worker on a gastro / liver ward at our DGH. This costs a significant amount of money and they are excited for it "to work".
They are going to see patients who are admitted with medical problems which are to some extent caused by psychosocial problems and take the opportunity of the admission to discuss wider determinants of health, help them identify what could be improved and make a plan to make that happen.
Which all sounds great but... how to we find out if it's working or helping? They are talking about readmission rates and length of stays but I doubt these will change much. It's not intensive enough for the patients with multiple frequent admissions. We were wondering about involving a med student to follow the patients up for 3,6 maybe even 12 months to see if there's been a life change... but that's proving difficult.
I wondered if anyone else had experience of a soc prescribing link worker on a medical ward??