Once you start working here, it becomes much more than just a job.
After working 18 years in recruitment, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit I was furloughed. Choosing to make a career change, I moved to work in domiciliary care through an agency. When an opportunity presented to have a permanent contract with Medvivo, which involved more than just domiciliary care and you were provided with a vehicle, I was keen to apply.
My application was successful and 18 months later I was promoted to Team Lead.
The team works across two core services; telecare and urgent care at home. Telecare visits can be a mixture of planned and unplanned call outs, whereas those patients on the urgent care at home service tend to be scheduled by the community health care professionals.
Urgent care at home reports come in during the day and visits are planned each day, although they are reviewed regularly during the day should new cases come in.
Telecare visits are covered when needed, so the focus of most shifts is managing the team and their case workload. When needed we can also support with going out on visits ourselves.
Other than that, as Team Leads we are also responsible for managing the team in terms of one-to-one meetings, incident investigations, updating paperwork and procedures and continuing our own and the team’s ongoing training.
It’s so much more than just caring for people. We are able to see things family members or friends might miss, and we are able to get help when it’s needed, additional equipment and/or ask for medication reviews.
The visits we do are much more than just being a carer. For those who are just out of hospital and have no-one around at home, we can give them our time, not just for caring for them but also providing reassurance, being sociable and befriending them so they feel confident to be living safely and independently at home.
Without a doubt I am most proud of the call I attended which should have been a straightforward case of lifting a service user who had fallen out of bed. On arriving and checking he was OK, it became clear that something was not right with his wife, who he believed to be asleep.
Basic life support training is provided each year to all staff here and I’d had my refresher training two days earlier. I never imagined I’d be putting my training into practice so soon. Thankfully we were able to get the service user’s wife breathing again and while the ambulance looked after her, we continued to look after him.
Feedback from the paramedics was amazing, and although I find it difficult to pat myself on the back when you’re just doing your job, I was humbled to receive STAR award nominations from my colleagues. This is a peer-to-peer recognition scheme for colleagues who go the extra mile or who deliver exceptional service. These are reviewed monthly and again overall for the year, and I was absolutely chuffed to bits to be Medvivo’s Star of the Year for 2021.
You will be successful here if you have the right mindset. Don’t treat it as just a job, it’s a vocation.
In addition to all the basic training the team has, we also provide support in terms of performing team duties and performance-related training. All staff complete the Care Certificate training which covers various aspects of care, and study for the NVQ level 3 in health and social care, which I’m currently doing.
In terms of support, there are other Team Leads who you can turn to, also Service Leads and an On Call Management Team. Clinical support is also available if we have concerns about any of our service users.
There is a lot to learn and understanding how the other teams at Medvivo operate and integrate with our own team is really essential.
As a Team Lead you want to do the best you can for the team, making sure you’re there for them, and not just sat behind a desk.
For me, it’s important to be honest and open with the team, sharing as much as possible to help them with their roles and ongoing development.
Working here comes with both emotional and personal rewards. As you are working with supportive and friendly people, accept there can be challenges because once you start working here, it becomes much more than just a job.