START (Supported Transfer Accelerated Rehabilitation Team)
Supported Transfer and Accelerated Rehabilitation Team (START)
Supported Transfer and Accelerated Rehabilitation Team (START) is part of the Waikato DHB's Older Persons, Rehabilitation and Allied Health service. START is the Waikato DHB service that supports patients to make a safe and quicker transition from hospital to home. It provides the intensive support and rehabilitation some patients need, but in their home rather than through a longer stay in hospital. It provides intensive rehabilitation for up to six weeks in patients’ homes following a stay in hospital or presentations at Emergency Department.
Patients identified are over 65 years of age and must have rehabilitation potential. A registered nurse, physiotherapist and occupational therapist will all visit the patient at home and help them to set some goals of their choice. A health care assistant may come and visit them up to three times per day to support them to achieve these goals.
The service has been proven to be effective.
- It delivers care in the person’s own environment and on their terms
- It helps them to achieve real life goals of their choice
- It reduces length of stay in the hospital
- It also supports the person to stay at home for longer and as a result halves the chances of the person being readmitted to hospital again.
The success of the seven-days-a-week service has seen it grow to three bases (at Thames, Hamilton and Cambridge) which cover the whole Waikato DHB area
over the last few years, the START service has gone from an “extra” option to an “essential”. It has become the benchmark supported discharge model that other district health boards are attempting to emulate.
It has won two awards for Outstanding Innovation in 2017 and 2018 from the Health Round Table, a collective of Australasian health organisations.
Charge Nurse Manager
START teams operate across the Waikato DHB health district.
Phone: 07 839 8669
Clients suitable for START are referred to the START team by hospital services as part of a planned discharge.