NHW Wales Awards 2023 logoThe Cwmtawe Pathway Service is a pilot service supported by Swansea Council for Voluntary Services (SCVS) in partnership with, and funded by, Cwmtawe Local Cluster Collaborative (LCC).

The service which helps people with complex health and well-being needs while taking pressure off GPs, has now received national recognition after being shortlisted in the 2023 NHS Wales Awards.

The service offers support to those struggling with substance misuse, mental health and domestic abuse, including sexual violence. Its support can also extend to family members affected by these issues.

It provides patient-centred care by working with each person to agree meaningful interventions that tackle their unmet needs or issues.

The pilot service was introduced in 2021 after mental health, domestic abuse and substance misuse were identified as three areas where the cluster – which covers Morriston, Clydach and Llansamlet – wanted to provide additional services.

Project Co-ordinator, Cara Lougher:

The service provides person-centred care to individuals who usually have multiple unmet needs. They are typically people who have been seeking support from their GP but often require further support. We tried to create a service which helps them to access other local services in whichever way they want to be seen or heard. So, we look at how they want to be contacted, whether they want to be seen in the surgery or in the community and how often. We aim to make sure people with poor mental health, who struggle with substance misuse or are domestic abuse victims feel supported and cared for.

Initially, an assessment is carried out to understand each person’s individual issues and needs.

A bespoke package of support is then put together relating to the needs and goals that person would like to achieve or would need support with.

They are then given one-to-one support which can include education around trauma, sleep and nutrition, help with getting support from local authorities or mental health team, help to navigate appropriate services – and more.

The introduction of the service has resulted in a 60 per cent reduction in the demand on GPs, as well as a 98 per cent increase in patients having improved access to other sources of support.

70 people, including family members, benefited from the service during its initial 18-month period.

The service is now hoping for further success after being shortlisted at the NHS Wales Awards, in the Delivering Person-Centred Services category. The awards will take place in an online ceremony on 15th November 2023.

The awards recognise how innovative ideas for change can make a significant difference to the patients who need care, the organisations who provide care, and the health and care system as a whole.

It is an opportunity to showcase hardworking and inspiring teams working together, striving to improve healthcare practices and patient care across Wales.

Of being shortlisted,

Cara Lougher:

I have always been proud of what we offer as a service but to hear it from other people, including patients and how it has helped them, was amazing.
Cwmtawe LCC lead, Mike Garner:
We invested in this project which has clearly proven its benefits to patients and the NHS as a whole. We couldn’t have anticipated it would be as successful as it has been and that is all down to Cara and the team. Being shortlisted for this award is a brilliant feather in the cap.
SCVS Director, Amanda Carr:
We are really proud of this project and the positive difference it is making to people in the Cwmtawe LCC.  Our partnership with Cwmtawe LCC, as well as other local clusters, has a history of developing innovative, high impact person-centred services. We are delighted the Cwmtawe Pathway Project is receiving national recognition.

Click here to find out more about the 2023 NHS Wales Awards