New resources to support patients, carers, families and health and care professionals with hospital discharge

New leaflets, videos and information resources have been developed to help provide extra support for patients, families and carers during their discharge from hospital and throughout their onward care journey.

The resources, which also provide information and support for health and care professionals looking after patients, support a new programme of work called Caring Steps Together, which has been established to improve the wider understanding of what can sometimes be the confusing process of leaving hospital and accessing follow-up care.  Colleagues from across the health and care system in BSW have collaborated on the programme to provide a holistic view of a patient’s care journey, drawing on insights from professionals, patients, carers and families.  

Colleagues working in the local health and care system have highlighted that more needs to be done to improve the wider understanding of complex discharge pathways and processes. Many have said the current approach to discharge is confusing and has led to stressful situations for both staff and patients.

The new resources will help support patients, their families and carers to understand the process of leaving hospital and the other services that are available to provide support in the community.

Gill May, Chief Nurse, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board, said: “It is a common misconception that hospital is the best place for a person’s recovery, as we know that people get back on their feet quicker when at home.

“This is why we’re getting patients and their families to think about the journey out of hospital as soon as they arrive, and it’s why we’re beginning to ramp up the support we give to people during the discharge process.

“Helping people to make informed decisions early on about their long-term care needs, whether that’s arranging social care or just finding out about support groups in the local community, will ensure their recovery journey gets off to a good start.”

The resources are available as printed hard copies and in a digital format and can be viewed and downloaded on the BSW Together website (

The team behind the development of the resources would like to pass on their thanks to the many people who helped: