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New approach to helping people home from hospital

Staff at the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust have begun using a new approach to help make the process of leaving hospital and returning home easier.

Staff working at the hospital have been doing this through the use of a new Community Wellbeing Hub Checklist which enables staff to discuss with patients, their relatives and carers what community support they will need when they return home from hospital, and to make referrals accordingly.

The Community Wellbeing Hub was set up in March 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Led by HCRG Care Group, it provides a central hub of wellbeing services delivered by a range of partner organisations for residents across Bath and North East Somerset. An outreach base is available in the Atrium of the RUH and offers advice on support available to patients and families preparing to leave hospital.

Using the checklist, staff at the RUH will be able to discuss services including cleaning, shopping, light domestics, food packs, welfare checks, community pendant alarms, Keysafes, Carers’ Support and more.

The checklist is a vital step for patient’s discharge experience by providing them with further community support.

The form saves time as everything is streamlined so referrals can be made simultaneously to multiple partners and, importantly, the progress of referrals can be monitored using the hospital’s internal systems.

At present, these services are only available to BANES patients but plans to expand into Wiltshire later this year are currently underway.

Michelle Goddard, Divisional Director of Nursing, Operations at the RUH said:

“Heading home after a hospital stay can pose various challenges. This new Community Wellbeing Hub referral form makes that process less stressful by making it easier for staff to get the help and support patients need in place before they are discharged.