THE FUTURE of medical care for older people in the area is up for discussion next week.
Health and Social Care Moray is bringing together staff, GPs, third and independent sectors, voluntary groups and the local community to identify improved ways of working.
A reshaping programme will initially focus on those who are dependent on others for support, or at high risk of hospital admission, to be cared for at home or in the community, minimising the need for inpatient care.
Chief officer Pam Gowans believes the majority of older people want to remain living at home for as long as possible.
She said: "Evidence has shown that if people remain in hospital longer than they need to, it can have a negative impact on their mental and physical health and wellbeing. Too often, alternatives to hospital care are not available. We are embarking on this programme to look for affordable alternative solutions. This will involve taking a long hard look at how we address a number of challenges including pressure on funding, growing demand for services, a shortage of some groups of staff and outdated buildings which are no longer fit for purpose and are costly to maintain."
Building on three previous community engagement events held in Forres last year, a further series of workshops are planned for February, April and June to gather ideas, identify priorities and explore opportunities.
A drop-in information event will take place on Monday, February 26 from 3-6pm, followed by the first workshop on Wednesday, February 28 from 7-9pm, both at Forres Town Hall.
An information leaflet is also being produced and will be distributed to groups and venues in the area.
A core project group of stakeholders will be responsible for taking forward the feedback from the workshops and considering options before identifying a preferred option for the new model and presenting this to the community for review.
Further information is available by contacting Health & Social Care Moray on 01343 567187 or emailing email@example.com.