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Having a needs assessment

Supporting you to live independently

In order to support older people to live well and as independently as possible, there are times when they will have their needs assessed.

This enables the older person, their family and health care providers to better understand the support that is required, and to ensure the right care and support is in place. Providers from across the Southern health system are committed to helping you, or your members of your family/whanau, maintain health and independence in your community and home.

How do I arrange a needs-based assessment?

Aged care and needs assessment is a district-wide initiative provided by Dunedin, Southland and rural hospitals to elderly people that may be in need of care that they are not currently receiving. Support services are arranged by the SDHB’s Care Co-ordination Centre (CCC).

Your doctor, the hospital treating you or another health professional, will send a referral to the CCC or you may refer yourself. Providing your referral meets the eligibility criteria for services, the CCC will assess and then arrange support for you.

After you have been referred for assessment, either a Southern DHB staff member or a Home and Community Support Service (HCSS) provider (Access Homehealth, Healthcare NZ, Royal District Nursing Service NZ) will contact you. The assessments are an opportunity to discuss with you and your family/ whanau the level of support needed and determine any urgent needs. The assessment may take up to two hours.

You are encouraged to have a family/whanau member present with you during the assessment so that your health, disability and other needs can be best understood by the assessor.

 

What happens during the assessment?

The assessments are carried out by either a DHB Clinical Needs Assessor (CNA) or HCSS Clinical Coordinator (CC). CNAs and CCs are qualified health professionals. They will use a laptop computer during the assessment to record information. CNAs and CCs will work with you and your family/ whanau to identify your health needs and goals.

Your goals will be personal and individual to you and could include managing your pain, being able to prepare a meal, or being able to regularly attend a community social group.

Your Clinical Needs Assessor or Care Coordinator will ensure your Support (Care) Workers have the training they need to help you, which could include assistance to do housework or exercise.

What happens after your assessment?

After the assessment, the Southern DHB Care Coordination Centre will arrange the services you need to help you achieve your health and independence goals. You will be advised as to what services will be provided.

There will be ongoing reviews of your care plan to make sure it is appropriately supporting you to live independently and enjoy life.

What support services are available?

Support services are available to people over 65 years who need assistance to live comfortably in their own home. Support services are also available to people needing post-hospital discharge care and palliative care. Residential care is available to those who meet the criteria for this level of care.

These services are available to anyone living in the Southern DHB district. These are some of the health services the Southern DHB can coordinate:

  • Domestic assistance (home help) and personal assistance

  • Carer support

  • Respite care

  • Community/District nursing

  • Rehabilitation services

  • Social work

  • Community activities

  • Meals on Wheels

  • Equipment to help support you in your home

  • Residential care.

All these support services are provided by organisations within the community and are managed by the Southern DHB.

 

Your privacy and rights:

The Southern DHB acts in accordance with the Health Information Privacy Code 1994 and the Code of Health and Disability Services Consumer Rights.