Alex was a white-British male in his 40s, with substance misuse issues and a diagnosis of a personality disorder. He was living in temporary accommodation when the team first met him, having previously experienced a period of rough sleeping. His room was infested with rats and bed bugs, but he was receiving no support with finding alternative accommodation and was deeply distressed by the situation. 

Alex was well-known to the hospital, due to being a frequent attender in A&E. After being caught in a fire, Alex developed chronic leg ulcers as a result of burns but wasn’t receiving any treatment for the condition.  

Upon referral to the team, they liaised with the drug support service to find out what his needs were, and facilitated a referral to supported accommodation. Alongside this, the team worked in the short-term to get his room decontaminated and a care package put in place to ensure his living environment was maintained. The team also referred Alex to the Roots to Roots team to help support with any issues on discharge. 

Upon discharge, district nurses were allocated to visit Alex and treat his leg ulcers, but he wasn’t comfortable allowing them into his room. As a result, he ended up back in hospital with a further infection in his legs.  

This time around, the team coordinated a multi-disciplinary meeting to arrange wrap-around support for the patient. Alex was included in this process and was allowed to express his preference for how he wanted his treatment to be managed. The team agreed a specific time and day for Alex to attend the clinic, with Groundswell agreeing to help with transportation. In addition, the team helped Alex with a supported accommodation assessment, which resulted in him being placed into supported accommodation.  

Alex has engaged positively with the treatment plan and hasn’t been back to hospital in nearly five months. He has now been discharged and has a support worker at the hostel who, alongside Groundswell, helps with his continued treatment. Thanks to the collaborative approach, Alex’s leg ulcers have improved and he’s continuing to engage with drug and medical services.