ARCH stands for Accessible, Restorative, Community Healthcare, so we are always looking for ways to make our service more accessible to people who may not be able to reach our surgery, in the heart of the city, or who may not be aware of our service. Our newly expanded outreach service was established in order to address this.
The team is made up of Advanced Nurse Practitioner Ruth, who is the Outreach Coordinator, and Jess, the Outreach Health Engagement Worker. They see patients in a variety of settings, including, hostels, outreach clinics or at their sleep sites (doorways, sheds, stairwells, car parks and tents). They also run regular clinics at day centres and other locations and services.
Fortnightly joint outreach sessions with CGL SOS team have proven to be very successful, and offers some evening and weekend cover.
The outreach service has been involved in a wide variety of consultation types including the management of acute illness and injuries, and monitoring of long-term conditions. It has also been useful in helping to raise awareness of Arch, and what the surgery can offer to people facing homelessness.
As part of Arch’s outreach work, it’s important to be able to travel around the city quickly, and have equipment to hand to be able to support and treat people as and when we meet them. We originally considered a vehicle for the outreach service, however the benefits of a bike soon became clear: