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Case Study 1

Introduction

In late March 2020, a GP practice received a call from a tearful 77 year old gentleman, who rang to say he had no food or milk and only a slice of bread left in his cupboard. He had no family to do any shopping for him and he was also shielding due to being at high risk.

His situation touched all the practice staff and the team themselves offered to go shopping for him.

A Senior Partner at the General Practice realised that a more long lasting solution needed to be put in place to support the patient and encouraged the practice team to refer them to Wakefield Council who had set up a contact line to support vulnerable residents by working with local voluntary and community sector (VCS) community hubs.

What happened?

The practice heard that the Council had called the patient the following day and arranged for a food parcel to be delivered weekly. Wakefield Council also made sure this patient had access to a contact number to call if he needed anything else.

A member of the general practice staff said:

“This patient was very grateful for the help he received from the practice, I know this first hand as I delivered him some shopping myself on the day he called. He was tearful and didn’t know what he would of done without our help. I did call him the following week to see how he was doing and he said the food parcel he was receiving weekly was a big help, especially not having to leave the house in his condition.”

The Senior Partner said:

“As a practice,we hadn’t experienced this situation before and as this was very early into the COVID-19 pandemic  It did initially cause some upset with our practice team because of the predicament our patient found himself in. It was reassuring to see the way our local system supported our vulnerable patient and the way local communities worked together to make sure he and other patients in our district had access to weekly food parcels.”