Nithsdale One-Stop Service Launched To Meet People’s Health & Social Care Needs  

A PIONEERING scheme in the region is taking a ‘one-stop shop’ approach to meeting people’s health and social care needs.

With current pressures on Health and Social Care eg. our hospitals, our GP practices, our Care at Home service – we have established a Single Point of Contact (SPoC) to reduce further pressures and supporting the people of Nithsdale.

The Nithsdale Single Point of Contact directs people to a team of experts who work together to identify the best health and social care pathways for that individual – helping ensure they receive the help they require.

Nithsdale in Partnership (NiP) are behind the service, and Service Manager Nithsdale Locality Gillian Coupland said: “This is a transformative approach to meeting people’s health and social care needs.

“Previously, people might have found themselves referred around a variety of departments and services, all working independently to identify and meet that person’s requirements.

“Now, someone will either be referred or will refer themselves into the Single Point of Contact. Right from the start a co-ordinated approach will take place to identify that person’s requirements, to work out what services best meet those needs, and for arrangements to be put in place.”

Gillian added: “When you consider just how large and complex our health and social care systems are, taking this co-ordinated approach right from the start will bring real benefits to the individual – getting them straight to the care they need.

“It’s better for the person as it means their needs are met quickly, and without them having to move round a variety of services. And it’s better for our services, too, as it cuts out duplication, and perhaps someone being referred to a service which isn’t quite right for their requirements.”

The SPoC is currently available for anyone over 16 years old living in Nithsdale.

They will either be referred or can self-refer into the SPoC, which is based in Dumfries.

The point of contact is a triage centre, manned by clinicians who are local, and have an excellent knowledge of the area.

They will take details on the individual, whose requirements will be considered as part of regular ‘Huddles’ and best outcomes are developed.

Gillian said: “This work takes in the whole of the resources available within Health and Social Care Partnership, including the independent sector and the third and voluntary sector.

“It means that the individual’s needs are seen within a service-wide context, and not just from the perspective of just one individual service.

“It’s a more holistic approach to finding the person the right support, at the right place, at the right time.

“It’s also part of making better use of our resources.

“So far the reception has been fantastic. People referred into the service are experiencing good outcomes.

“And the clinicians like it, with GPs knowing that there’s a team here waiting to help.”

The Single Point of Contact is accessed by phoning 030 33 33 3001 which is a local number charged at local rates. Open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.

Anybody seeking more information is invited to contact Gillian Coupland on 01387 220 038 or by email