Help get your loved ones home from hospital for Easter

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Health leaders across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire are encouraging people to help their loved ones return home from hospital before the Easter bank holiday.

Easter traditionally sees an increase in demand for NHS services and people are being asked to ‘do their bit’ to reduce pressures by making sure that loved ones can return home promptly once they are fit to leave hospital.

It is better for a patient to recover at home or in a care home following a hospital stay, this also means beds are left available for patients who really need them.

Sue Jones, Director of Nursing and Quality at North Bristol NHS Trust, said:

“We want to provide the very best care to all of our patients, but we know that when people are well enough to leave hospital, it is best for them to continue their recovery at home or in an appropriate community or care home setting.

“We know that ten days in a hospital bed can lead to ten years muscle ageing in people over 80. We want our patients to get up, moving and most importantly back to their own homes, as soon as they are ready.

“This Easter we know a lot of our patients would rather be at home with their loved ones than in hospital, so if you could provide a bridge to ongoing care by helping to support your relative we would happy to support you in doing this, please contact the nurse in charge to arrange this.”

Sarah-Jayne Knowles, Lead Nurse for the Discharge Lounge at the Bristol Royal Infirmary, said:

“When a patient is ready to be discharged from hospital it’s important we do all we can to help them to return home or to the next stage of their care without delay, especially at a time like Easter.

“If you have a loved one in hospital and are unsure about plans for their discharge please speak to a nurse who will be able to provide the relevant information and let you know how you may be able to help.”

Dr Lesley Ward, NHS Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Groups’ Urgent Care Lead, said:

“As well as harming their own health, an unnecessary hospital stay has a huge impact on the flow at a hospital, especially in accident and emergency departments.

“Patients who need to be transferred to a ward are often unable to do so as there are a lack of available beds, some of which are occupied by patients who no longer need to be there.”

An online guide to local health services including self-care advice and details of emergency pharmacists, urgent care and emergency services is available on the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCGs’ websites.

The free Service Finder app is available on smartphones and offers on-the-go advice of local NHS services. Also download the NHS HANDi app that provides expert advice and guidance on common childhood illnesses.