Job Description Patients Association Helpline Case worker Salary

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Job Description
Patients Association Helpline Case worker
Salary: £26,000 PA- negotiable depending on experience - will
consider job share/ part time
Base- Head office- with travel nationally
Contract type- initial one year
The Patients Association has been providing patients and the public with advice relating to their
experience of healthcare for over 52 years. The Helpline receives over 7, 000 enquiries a year
through telephone, email and letters. The Helpline forms an essential part of the research and
campaigning work of the charity by informing our work and ensuring we have a very real
understanding of issues facing patients.
The Helpline Case worker post is an exciting opportunity, ideal for an experienced PALS/ complaints
officer, advocate, nursing, social worker, now seeking to develop their experience and increase their
responsibility and impact. The post will be split into undertaking individual case work, information,
advice and signposting services to patients, relatives and carers. To include assisting with
correspondence from patients and the public to our National Helpline.
The Helpline Case worker will act as an ambassador for the service as it expands, working with the
Helpline Manager and the Policy and Campaigns Manager and the executive, promoting its work and
sourcing funding.
Purpose of role
Case work, advice, support and signposting
To proactively manage and deliver a first class casework service alongside working with the Helpline
Advisor and Helpline Manager to co-ordinate the provision of a professional Helpline service to
patients and the public. The helpline includes enquiries received by email, letter and telephone.
To ensure the Helpline provides up to date, accurate and timely advice to all enquirers by personally
keeping up to date with national and local health and social care issues. To act as the day to day
contact for casework, coordinating the provision of the service by the Helpline Adviser and Helpline
Volunteers.
To work with the Helpline Manager and supervise, develop and critically evaluate the information
and advice provided by the Helpline Service and provide feedback to all PA staff.
To produce up to date guidelines and algorithms to assist the Helpline Advisers and Helpline
Volunteers in responding to enquiries.
To support the Helpline Advisers and Helpline Volunteers in dealing with complicated or sensitive
enquiries which may include dealing with enquiries directly when appropriate.
To analyse the enquiries to the helpline and identify trends which could then inform areas for
further training or campaigning.
To produce overview reports of enquiries for the Helpline Manager, to support the development of
Patients Association policy and activity through monthly reports to the Deputy CEO and to perform
regular audits. This may change to weekly/daily reports
To highlight serious and concerning enquiries to the Helpline Manager for further investigation when
appropriate. Act as an ambassador for the Helpline, working with the Helpline Manager to highlight
the work of the helpline by promoting its service to the NHS/Social Care/3rd sector organisations and
other suitable organisations including through face to face meetings and presentations.
To lead on supporting people who contact the Helpline with complex enquiries who require
proactive case work in order for them to reach a satisfactory resolution. The involvement and
commitment will vary with each case.
To provide telephone, email, letter, 1:1 support to patients, relatives, carers, including advice,
information signposting and any support at key stages.
To provide additional support where necessary by offering to make enquiries on the enquirers
behalf or by accompanying them to meetings or /coroners inquests.
On behalf of the complainant, draft letters/reports to support them to achieve positive outcomes,
for example, NHS/local authority commissioners, care providers, regulatory organisations, CQC,
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.
To review and regularly update, protocols, policies and procedures with regard to case work.
To maintain detailed case records for the purpose of continuity of casework, information retrieval
and providing reports when required.
To objectively review reports in response to complaints and advise on way forward.
To work with the Helpline Manager to ensure cases are reported to the CQC or other regulators
when appropriate.
To take responsibility for maintaining contemporaneous, detailed records and updating the database
and ensuring the process is complete with regards to case studies, consent, contact details etc.
To assist the Helpline Manager with case studies suitable for the Patients Association annual report –
patient stories and to help draft this publication.
To undertake research as directed by the Helpline Manager
To provide leadership and mentorship to the Helpline Advisers and Helpline Volunteers.
To develop the Helpline database and equipment to ensure it meets the requirements of an
expanding Helpline/ Casework service
Any other duties that may be deemed necessary by the Helpline Manager or other senior staff of the
Patients Association
The post holder will be working in a developing environment and will therefore be expected to
undertake other duties as they develop.
Person Specification
Professional attitude
Willingness to travel nationally
Friendly and confident manner
Excellent oral and written communication skills including an excellent telephone manner
Excellent active listening skills
Analytical skills
Ability to demonstrate compassion and caring
Ability to work across professional boundaries, Self-motivated and flexible with the ability to work
on own initiative and as part of a team
Maintain confidentiality of information relating to patients, carers, relatives and any sensitive issues
relating to the work of the organisationBe flexible and available to work in accordance with the
needs of the organisation.
Computer literate and able to enter details onto the computer database whilst taking a helpline call.
Excellent knowledge of the wide variety of problems facing patients using the NHS and the avenues
for addressing these and an excellent understanding of the patient experience pathway
Training and experience in taking enquiries from the public and patients on problems with the NHS/
social care systems
Training and experience in public and patient involvement including surveys and audit
Experience of critical evaluation of first-hand accounts of patient care (e.g. complaints handling)
Experience of implementing organisational policy and guidelines
Ability to maintain contemporaneous detailed database of casework
Ability to manage and prioritise diary effectively and efficiently to meet the demands of the cases
Ability to write complex case reports
Must respect cultural diversity and have a non-judgemental attitude to the range of problems
presented
Person Specification Desired
Experience of fundraising including the development of successful applications
Experience of developing databases
Experience of producing and researching written reports
Driver with own car preferential
To apply please send cover letter and CV to [email protected] with
the subject line “Helpline case worker” or write to Helpline Case worker vacancy, Patients
Association, PO Box 935, Harrow, Middlesex, HA1 3YJ. For questions please call Jacqueline Coles,
Deputy CEO on 0209 423 9111 or email [email protected]
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