Nathan - A Person Centred Move?
When Nathan's advocate saw the plan for Nathan's move from hospital, he quickly realised that a major element was missing - Nathan. The advocate helped to ensure that Nathan was supported to understand what was happening and where he was going to be living.
Nathan has been living in a hospital, but has been ready to move on for some time. Nathan is in his early 20s and has Autism Spectrum Disorder and Learning Disabilities and is able to understand some spoken words but cannot communicate verbally. Nathan's independent advocate often acts for him in a non-instructed capacity, spending time with him in order to understand what his wishes might be were he able to express them. The advocate represents Nathan's interests in discussions and meetings.
Nathan had been ready for discharge for some time and his Home team had been looking for a suitable step down placement, which had now been identified. Nathan was assessed by the provider and it was confirmed that he could be supported effectively. A detailed transition plan was received by the hospital and the content was discussed by professionals in Nathan's multi-disciplinary team (MDT) meeting. This six week plan involved new placement staff visits for 3 days each week over a six week period. It was agreed by all that it was appropriate and effective to enable Nathan to gain trust with the new staff and for them to be able to observe his behaviours and triggers and identify appropriate support mechanisms.
When the advocate saw the plan however, they realised that Nathan's need for routine and stability had not been taken into account. Nathan was being given the opportunity to meet new staff, but not experience anything about where he was going to be living. The advocate highlighted the omission and recommended that a visit was needed so that Nathan could see his new placement and become familiar with the surroundings before moving there.
With the team's agreement that a visit was essential, and should be included within the plan, it was added and a date organised. Nathan's advocate followed up the team throughout the transition plan to ensure that Nathan was being included at all times and that he was comfortable with the changes that were happening. On the day of the visit, the advocate went with Nathan to support him through the day and help staff at the new placement to understand his views and wishes.
Now, after a successful transition, Nathan has now moved into his new home and is settling in well.