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Share the Journey

Would you like to find out more and Share the Journey with Medequip and Community Catalysts to learn and share how services can be improved, undertake some benchmarking, hear our experiences, trial some innovations?

To get involved – please complete this simple application form and email it back to d.griffiths@medequip-uk.com and we will be in touch.

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Share the Journey - An Introduction

Share the Journey

It's about the people you meet along the way

Any long project, is like any long journey. However fabulous the destination is going to be, it’s important to be happy along the way.

Medequip have been on a journey of improvement, and truth be told, working in the Health and Social Care system, the destination, whilst always in sight, is always some way off.

That is why we want to do our best today, and tomorrow, for our contract authorities, suppliers, community partners and the people we support.

So, when someone asked me if we ever partnered with or helped in-house Community Equipment Services, I couldn’t think of good reasons why we weren’t and I was curious about the people we would meet. We got our thinking hats on, thought about what we could offer and so the idea of “share the journey” was born.

Share the journey is a three month, fully-funded project team, offered to three Local Authorities or NHS organisations that provide their own, in-house Community Equipment Service in England, Scotland or Wales. We have partnered with the innovative social enterprise Community Catalysts to help us deliver something different.

Whether you want to benchmark your service against best practice standards, reimagine how the service could develop, or simply take stock of where you are, a Share the Journey Project Team could be the answer.

Medequip and Community Catalysts will offer your organisation support, bringing in dedicated people with specialist skills once you agree. You would also be expected to enable key staff to participate. People using the service and local community groups should be included too.

What’s the catch I hear you say. What’s in it for Medequip?

No catch. We just all learn a bit from each other and improve things for people who use our services. I have committed Medequip to its own journey of improvement and I think there is a lot of learning out there and a lot of good stuff Medequip and Community Catalysts can contribute.

The simple application process is explained in more detail in the newsletter, along with stories from people who work for Medequip, suppliers, partners and people who are helping us improve.

I hope you will consider this offer and if you want an informal chat about how this might work for you, please drop me a line.

David Griffiths, Managing Director, Medequip
d.griffiths@medequip-uk.com

Share the Journey - get involved
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Medequip and Community Catalysts - Already Sharing the Journey

Medequip and Community Catalysts

"We were first approached by Medequip just over a year ago with a view to sharing expertise on community, personalisation and coproduction. I must admit that initially, we approached the concept with some level of healthy scepticism. We were wary of how our ethos and values could integrate with a large corporate, how we could maintain the focus on people and communities and make them central to the partnership."

"Our scepticism was short-lived. It quickly became obvious that the Medequip team was working hard to develop itself and its approach, driven by strong values and a commitment to customer service.

A year on and we have just completed a key piece of work, helping Medequip to consider and develop their feedback process, using a coproduction approach. This involved creating a group bringing together users of equipment, their families and equipment prescribers, building opportunities for Medequip to hear the real voices of people using the equipment on a day to day basis. The new feedback system that has emerged from this process is now being tested and in the future will hopefully play an important role in helping Medequip and their commissioners to listen to these voices when they consider the services they provide.

The importance of this work is effectively illustrated by Isaac Samuels, a member of this group and a freelance coproduction adviser, who writes about his experiences here.

We are confident that the Medequip team is genuine in their desire to coproduce and hear people’s voices. As a partner in the Share the Journey project, we at Community Catalysts look forward to working closely with the project team to identify the chosen initiatives and to provide input and mentoring support over the course of the project.”

Angela Catley, Director of Development for Community Catalysts

Other work has included helping Medequip to identify and connect with disabled people, organisations and community groups in areas where they are tendering for contracts, to help them to fully understand individual and local requirements and issues. Our work with Community Catalysts is proving invaluable, stated David Griffths, Managing Director for Medequip. Their experience and credibility creates an important bridge between the people, communities and the voluntary and statutory sectors, and we are constantly learning from their connections with people with lived experience.

Share the Journey - get involved
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Share the Journey - Accora and Age UK

Share the Journey - Accora and Age UK

Richard Smith, Sales Director for medical equipment manufacturers Accora, talks about the company’s link-up with Age UK in Cambridge in the shape of a ‘Listeners’ initiative to befriend and communicate with older people.

"There were a number of contributing factors behind our decision to move forward with a planned CSR programme. Alongside our own desire to add social value and the need to demonstrate our commitment in tenders and other documents, we were encouraged and supported by Medequip, a key customer for Accora, who shared expertise and knowledge with us to help get our initiative under way.

With a network of technicians and representatives across the country, we looked initially at a national initiative, but made the decision to partner with our local Age UK to ensure we could begin by delivering and monitoring something meaningful and commercially viable.

Our ‘Listeners’ befriending programme makes best use of our Support Centre staff, who have specialist skills in telephone techniques and proven abilities to communicate well. In addition, it effectively cuts the shackles of geography and provides us with a foundation which we can extend into other operational areas in the future.

We began the programme with our local Cambridge team, using an allocated percentage of their time to conduct outbound telephone calls to elderly people in the area identified by Age UK. This initiative is working well and proving rewarding, both for our staff and for the local residents they are now chatting with on a regular basis.

One of the great advantages for Accora has been how much the team is enjoying this part of their work, and how well received it has been. Recent feedback has been encouraging, with our staff reporting as follows.

Calls are usually around 30 minutes every Wednesday at 10am which I find easy to fit in with my day job. My service user match looks forward to the calls and has fed back to Age UK that she is happy to continue as am I. It’s a very rewarding call to make!"

Jo, Accora

"I called Allen at 11am this morning – we had a really lovely chat for 30mins and covered quite a lot! I really enjoyed the call and look forward to speaking to him again."

Tanya, Accora

"Once our befriending ‘Listeners’ programme has had a little more time and gained more experience, we plan to look at how we extend this across a wider geographical area, hopefully again in partnership with Age UK in different parts of the country."

Richard Smith, Accora Ltd
Share the Journey - get involved
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Share the Journey - Jade's Story

Share the Journey - Jades Story

From being a person with lived experience, to becoming a member of the Medequip team

Growing up

When I was just 15 years old, I had to have a massive operation on my legs where I needed a Medequip hospital bed, commode and a few other items.

Medequip was super! They delivered all the equipment that was needed for me after my operation. They delivered it on the day of my surgery to make sure it was all in and ready for my hospital discharge.

Once I got home from the hospital, I was thankful for having the bed. As I couldn’t lay down flat, I was happy to have the bed so I could go to sleep comfortably sat up.

Once 6 weeks had passed and I was able to weight bare again, we sent some of the equipment back to Medequip and it was perfect. It was all collected on the date they had given.

Once I was able to weight bare, I then had a different delivery of grab rails and shower stool.

I kept the bed for a few years, just so that I could use the ‘sit up’ function. With every year that passed, they booked it in for a service, to make sure everything was perfect with the bed, which it was!

Once I was ready to get rid of the bed, we simply phoned up our local depot and booked the bed in for collection. It was so easy to do!

A few years later

I managed to get an interview at my local Medequip. I was nervous to start with, but once I was there, I felt comfortable.

After the interview had ended, I was asked when I could start - I was so pleased with myself getting a job as I was finding it hard whilst being in a wheelchair.

I was given 2 weeks training for the job, which made me feel very welcome and got me used to doing everything we need to do on the computers.

Since the training, I noticed that you still learn something new every day, and if you get stuck there is always someone to ask!

It is a great pleasure to be working with an amazing team that all work together to help each other.

I can’t thank Medequip and the people that I work with enough for taking me on for who I am.

Share the Journey - get involved
Share the Journey - get involved