The service commissioned by the PCT, to be provided by SALUS will target IB recipients in 4 areas of County Durham. The areas are Easington, Sedgefield, Derwentside and Wear Valley. Participation in the service is voluntary and in order to qualify for it recipients must have been on IB for 3 years plus. There are some issues surrounding eligibility due to the nature of IB, for example a client can reactivate an original claim within 2 years of leaving IB. Consequently a persons IB claim may have begun in 2005 but they may have worked for the whole of 2008 and then returned to IB. I have attempted to clarity this issue with the PCT and JCP and it has been decided that eligibility for the SALUS service will be based on the individual concerned official IB claim date. This is will of course apply in the same way for control group eligibility.
The service began in October 2009 and will run until October 2011. The service will initially begin in Easington and Sedgefield where the first cohorts (200 participants per area) will be recruited. The intervention will last 6 months. Thus the initial cohorts will complete the intervention at the end of March 2010.
The second wave of the intervention is due to begin in June 2010 with new cohorts in Easington and Sedgefield and initial cohorts in Derwentside and Wear Valley. These will complete at the end of 2010.
The intervention is based on a casework model. Each individual will be assessed and managed by a health case worker. Contact is envisaged to be predominantly by telephone, but SALUS recognise that this approach may not work for everyone and some face to face contacts will also occur. Case workers will direct participants to the services most appropriate for their needs.
Those on the programme will not be entitled to nor receive any exclusive NHS services which are not available to the general public.