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Praise for staff providing ‘Lifeline’ to residents

Praise for staff providing ‘Lifeline’ to residents
21 July 2021

Council staff have been praised for providing an essential ‘Lifeline’ to residents across Darlington, particularly amid the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.

More than 3,360 residents rely on support from the council’s Lifeline team, which gives users the freedom to live independently with the added security of knowing that help is always there if needed. If you are living alone, unwell or caring for someone Lifeline could be the service for you.

Councillor Kevin Nicholson, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and housing, said:

“Our Lifeline team does an extraordinary job; they are always available to support our residents all year round. Our Lifeline programme helps people to have independent lives and gives confidence that should you need help, it is only a call away. 

“Throughout the pandemic our Lifeline staff have been on the frontline doing an exceptional job. It is staggering to see that the team has received 47,417 calls for support so far this year and have attended 3,934 incidents. 

“I am proud of what they do for our communities, ensuring that the most vulnerable have a lifeline in these challenging times.” 

This year, between the start of January and the end of June, the Lifeline team has achieved the following:

Phone calls received –                                                 47,417

Incidents attended –                                                    3,934

Average response time –                                            12mins and 10 seconds

New equipment installs –                                           241

Activities delivered –                                                  748

Welfare calls made by scheme managers –           67,434

Only 58 Lifeline clients were taken to hospital in that period, highlighting how the early response and intervention can often mean that the response officers assist someone before their situation deteriorates, which can sometimes reduce the need for a hospital visit or admission.

The team has also taken additional steps to make sure that users have been kept as safe as possible during the pandemic, which have included ensuring all members of the team have had their second COVID vaccinations.

A roadmap has also been produced which reflects government guidance but is relevant to our group living settings. For example we have worked closely with our Move More team to restart our exercise classes and non-essential services such as private cleaners and hairdressers.

All of this for a cost of £5.98 per week with free installation and no extra cost per visit.

For more information or to start the process of getting equipment installed call our Lifeline Team on 01325 406888 where a free no obligation demonstration can be organised or visit our website at  

If you are working with Adult Social Care then the Lifeline Service can be assessed and referred for as part of the person’s care plan and if someone is receiving a reablement service from RIACT they can also receive up to six weeks free Lifeline support.


Photo caption (L-R) - Lifeline staff Nicola Mattinson, Tom Ward and Julie Paton with Cllr Kevin Nicholson