Hospital discharge

Improving the experience of hospital discharge

Why is Hospital Discharge a priority for Healthwatch Surrey?

Hospital Discharge is a a priority because ‘Follow-up care and support’ has regularly been among the top three most common themes/topics over the last 12 months.

Not forgetting that Hospital discharge is a national issue – see Healthwatch England’s report ‘Safely Home’.

Also, during our work on Safe Havens we asked service users if they had been discharged from hospital with a care plan in place… A high number of the Safe Haven users had been discharged without a care plan.

What work have we been doing on hospital discharge?

Healthwatch Surrey contributed live and pre-recorded case studies to the recent launch event of the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Academic Health Science Network (KSSAHN) ‘Safe Discharge and Transfers’ project, to help participants reflect on the impact of poor discharge on patients, their families and carers. Healthwatch Surrey volunteer ‘Patient Leaders’ are also involved in the project.

We are in the early stages of developing a project with Epsom Hospital to look at how the new Epsom Community Assessment and Diagnostics Unit (CADU) (designed to reduce hospital admissions of elderly patients) and ‘accelerated discharge’ processes are working.

We will be publishing a summary report based on what we have learned so far about the experiences of local people being discharged from hospital. The content will include:

– Feedback gathered through a joint survey with Healthwatch WAM on hospital discharge from Frimley Health FT.

– Issues identified from our report to the Surrey Safeguarding Board on leaving hospital.

– Wider research/learning from ‘the system’.

What can I do to help support the campaign?

  • Ask people to share their experiences of leaving a hospital setting and issues related to the provision of on-going care, following a hospital stay.
  • Ask people within the NHS/social care system (care professionals, commissioners) for their feedback about how they think the discharge process is working and what could be improved. Please contact us if you gather any information.

What will a successful campaign look like?

  • We will receive more experiences and views about hospital discharge during campaign period.
  • Positive feedback from stakeholders, commissioners and providers with interest in Hospital Discharge.
  • Media opportunities to promote our work on hospital discharge and to call for more evidence from local people.