HEALTH bosses in Worcestershire are working on a pioneering scheme to help healthcare workers spend less time on administration and more time with patients.

The Community Services Development scheme, being development by Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, aims to move services for patients with long-term conditions and the elderly out of hospitals and into a series of five community hubs throughout the county.

Speaking at a meeting of Worcestershire’s Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday the trust’s director of operations, Stephen Collman, said the plans were being put together following predictions that the country’s elderly population – who often need a great deal of care in the community – is to continue to increase.

He said surveys had also shown healthcare workers were spending up to half of their time on administration work rather than with patients.

“We do need to drive up productivity but for most people it’s about more face to face contact,” he said.

“People who are on the front line shouldn’t have to fill in lots of paper.

“What we want is a really simplified system.

“We want to be a pioneer and have people saying in a few years ‘let’s do it like Worcestershire does it’.”

The meeting also heard for every two patients healthcare workers see at their own homes they can see three in a clinic.

Committee member for Worcestershire County Council Cllr Phil Grove said the idea of setting up hubs meant patients would still be able to get care close to their communities while cutting down on time spent by healthcare workers travelling between their homes.

“The thrust of this is to see more patients in clinics and less at home,” he said.

“The benefit of this is to see more patients and save time.

“And there is more social interaction which is great.”

Some elements of the scheme have already been put in place such as Leg Clubs for patients suffering with leg ulcers.

The groups have proven extremely popular with patients and have cut recovery times by an average of 15 weeks.

The trust will continue to put the plans together and will present an updated version of the scheme to the committee in October.