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LinkAGE program for seniors comes to Picton

Quinte-Linkage-A new program launched at Belleville and hospitals earlier this summer is coming to Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital (PECMH).

As of Oct. 16, residents in Picton will access to Quinte LinkAGE – an outpatient clinic that provides inter-professional, senior-friendly assessment, medication review and reconciliation, education and care planning for at risk individuals who are 65 years or older.

Quinte LinkAGE is a pilot program that supports vulnerable seniors living at home, helping to identify gaps in supports and links to community services and health resources in an effort to avoid visits to the emergency department and hospital admissions for non-medical reasons.

The clinic has been alternating between Belleville hospital in the emergency department Medical Day Clinic on Quinte 1, and at Trenton hospital in the day surgery area.

As of Friday, seniors will have the option of choosing to visit a third clinic which will be located on the main floor at Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital (PECMH).

Patients are welcome to go to whichever of the three clinics is most convenient for them, regardless of where they reside.

The clinic at BGH operates on Mondays and Thursdays, at TMH on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and will operate on Fridays at PECMH.

Patients participate in a 2 – 2.5 hour assessment with members of the Quinte LinkAGE team. They will receive an individualized service plan which will include links to community supports, programs and organizations, a summary of recommendations (provided to the patient and forwarded to their primary care provider), community service coordination and a scheduled follow up appointment with the patient’s primary care physician or “Most Responsible Physician (MRP)”.

Erin MacKinnon, Occupational Therapist with Quinte LinkAGE said that they would like to see community partners identify and refer vulnerable persons to Quinte LinkAGE before they need to make use of the Emergency Department or before the person gets to the point of needing an admission to hospital.

“In many instances, prevention is the key to keeping people healthy and in their homes where they want to be,” she said. “Our clinic can be an effective prevention tool with the power to directly impact the quality of life of our senior population while making good use of our health care dollars.”

Quinte LinkAGE team members are: Christina Nugent, South East Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) Coordinator; Erin MacKinnon, Occupational Therapist; and Peet DeVilliers, Pharmacist.

Peet said the disciplines and skills that each team member brings to the table complement each other with respect to being able to formulate a comprehensive care plan with the client and their caregiver.

“Each member of the team offers their own expertise with the same goal in mind for the client.”

Patients can be referred by their primary care provider in the community, CCAC, Family Health Team, Community Health Centre, nurse practitioner lead clinic, Healthlinks or through another community health service. The referral form is available at www.qhc.on.ca (under Services and Clinics, Quinte LinkAGE). Clinic appointments are available five days per week. Quinte LinkAGE is a partnership between Quinte Health Care and SE CCAC jointly funded through the SE LHIN.

Criteria:
Check the FFACS

F- FALLS (at risk for)
F- FUNCTIONAL CHANGE/DECLINE
A- AGE (OVER 65)*
C- COGNITIVE CHANGE/DECLINE
S- SUPPORTS (LIMITED/LACKING)

If a patient meets 3 of 5 criteria and is not:
• A long term care resident
• Unable to attend an out-patient appointment
• Receiving end of life care
• Require intensive monitoring for a medical condition

Patients must be 65 or order. Residents of Long Term Care facilities are not eligible for this service. Quinte LinkAGE is not an urgent care clinic and team members do not go into the community or carry a caseload (clients are seen once and recommendations are made). The client is responsible for transportation to and from the hospital.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere Else

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