The Importance of Person-Centred Care in Case Management

At Innova,  our experienced case management team work alongside solicitors, architects, contractors, case managers, occupational therapists, and, of course, the client themselves in personal injury and medical negligence cases.

Being in touch with the whole team allows us to take a holistic approach and work creatively to provide the best possible care solutions for the individual client.

Whether we’re specifying a power wheelchair, designing an accessible bathroom, or installing hydrotherapy pools and hoist systems, person-centred care is key in all of our solutions! We focus on customised products and consultations with our clients to really understand and address their requirements.

This person-centred consultation is especially important in case management. After all, you’re looking for the perfect equipment for one individual, not trying to meet the needs of everyone in a multi-user environment!

In this article, we look at the definition of person-centred care and the benefits it offers people with disabilities and their families.  Rather than focusing on our own experiences, we asked one of our long-term clients to share their thoughts…

What is person-centred care?

The NHS definition of person-centred care gives a good overview of what is involved:

Being person-centred is about focusing care on the needs of the individual. Ensuring that people’s preferences, needs, and values guide clinical decisions, and providing care that is respectful of and responsive to them.

The key point is that it focuses on putting the client’s needs first and consulting their family too. As opposed to healthcare professionals making all the decisions independently.

Why is this important in case management?

When working with someone to find equipment for their home and daily use, there are some clear benefits of taking a person-centred care approach.

The main benefits include:

  • Improved clinical and function outcomes – By focusing on the client’s key challenges and goals, you’re more likely to reach those goals faster.
  • Increased feeling of independence – Helps the client take more responsibility for their own health/needs.
  • Greater client engagement – Good for healthcare professionals setting goals and working to enhance the quality of life.
  • Higher satisfaction with care.

Real-world examples

It is all very well hearing this from us! But to really understand the benefits of patient-centered care in case management, it helps to hear them first-hand.

Here’s what one of our clients, Martyn Chambers, had to say about his family’s experiences with accessing support and care through Innova.

Martyn is one of our longstanding clients. He came to us around 5 years ago looking for equipment to cater to the complex care needs of his eldest son. In our discussion, he shared some honest feedback about the challenges they’ve faced and what has been important for them.

Here are 4 key takeaways from his experiences:

1)      Historically, there has been a ‘one size fits all’ approach to care equipment

“I have almost thirty years’ experience trying to source specialist disability goods and services within both the public and private sectors.

Sadly, in all those years prior to finding Innova, our family endured an endless number of other healthcare companies. All too often the experience of dealing with them left us feeling cold.

Typically, they all seemed to offer similar, poorly designed equipment. It often looked hideous, was difficult to operate, move, or whatever else.

It doesn’t matter whether it was a wheelchair, hoist, eating aid, or whatever else, it’s usually been a depressing purchasing experience. The cost, though, has always seemed absurdly high!”

You can see that one of Martyn’s main frustrations was at paying a high cost for equipment that didn’t fully meet his son’s needs.

This is a major problem with off-the-shelf care solutions. By focusing on person-centred care, it is a lot easier to cater all equipment to the client’s needs.

You don’t need to pay for features you don’t need and can prioritise those that you do.

A yellow tape measure

2)      Person-centred care has clinical and practical day-to-day benefits

Another key concern Martyn expressed was feeling like the healthcare industry was telling him that disability equipment didn’t really matter. To use Martyn’s own words…

“Well, actually, it does matter.

It matters to the individual wheelchair user that each seating system is tailored to that person’s exact needs and is comfortable for day-long use. At the same time, it must provide proper postural support to help prevent any long-term spinal or other problems.

It matters to the carer and the disabled person that the hoist is ultra-reliable, can be safely operated, and is easily manoeuvred within their own home – not just in a sales demo!

It matters that buttons and controls on devices can be easily operated by the disabled person and/or the carer depending on the personal situation.

I could go on, but you get my point; it’s all about finding good quality equipment and services that fit around the particular needs of the individual person.”

This highlights that, for people with disabilities, care equipment is used in all areas of their life.

It’s critical that suppliers and healthcare professionals consider how anything they recommend may impact everything their client does day-to-day.

3)      Having a variety of equipment to choose from is key

After discussing his previous challenges, we asked Martyn why he continued to come back to Innova to assist with his son’s care.

“Innova ‘get it’. They totally get it. They understand. That’s it!

In fact, they have an obsession; to relentlessly search out and find the best healthcare equipment in the market worldwide.

To date we have purchased a range of goods and services, including an electric wheelchair, mobile hoists, and two superb ceiling track hoist systems providing effortless transfers between wheelchair, bed, changing bench, bath, and WC.

The quality of this equipment has enhanced the quality of life for our son, and at the same time that of the rest of our family, as it’s made life easier compared to the equipment we previously had to operate.”

A takeaway here is, just one piece of equipment typically doesn’t cover everything needed by clients with complex disabilities.  Being able to get all the necessary equipment from one supplier ensures that everything serves works towards the same goals and requirements.

4)      The team you work with are as important as the equipment for achieving truly person-centred care

The final key point Martyn touched on is the importance of industry professionals in delivering truly person-centred care.

“Here though is the real secret, the essence at the core of Innova.

It’s not just about the product, it’s about people.

Without a doubt, every person at Innova that we have met, or spoken with, has been fantastic.

When you call them and explain your situation or the needs and aspirations of your project, you will find yourself speaking with someone knowledgeable at Innova who listens and understands you. They will be able to offer a solution within your budget.

It doesn’t matter if you are speaking with the sales team, project managers, accounts staff, or the highly skilled installation and service personnel, or whoever; they are all experts in what they do and it’s a privilege to know them all.”

It’s easy to think that responsibility for person-centred care ends with the practitioners, like doctors and OTs. But we believe taking a holistic approach is key for any care supplier too!

Martyn’s experiences show the huge benefit it can have on the quality of life.

“I have no hesitation in saying, whoever you are when it comes to finding innovative healthcare products and services, whatever your search criteria, the answer is always the same –  Innova Care Concepts.”

Summary

We’d like to end with a huge thank you to Martyn and his family for their continued support. We really appreciate the time taken to share his feedback and insights.

The whole team has a huge focus on person-centred care. So, we’re pleased to see it’s paying off and having such a positive impact on our clients!

At its core, person-centred care comes down to listening to, and understanding, people’s individual circumstances.

If you’d like a consultation with our case management team, please get in touch. We’ll be more than happy to talk through your requirements to find equipment that suits you and your home.