Getting ready to go home during the pandemic

Wednesday 10 February 2021

Health and care agencies across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire are working together to try to ensure people are able to leave hospital as soon as they are medically well enough. Our priority is ensuring people are discharged safely to continue their recovery and our teams will discuss with individuals and a family member if they wish, the details of their discharge once the doctor has advised they are well enough to leave hospital.

You will be aware we are experiencing extraordinary times and our teams are working with the additional demands of the coronavirus pandemic. This demand for NHS services means more than ever that every hospital bed is needed for those who are most extremely medically unwell, and because of this, we are now supporting more people to move into the community for their ongoing rehabilitation.

While we need to make sure that our hospital beds are available for those who need them most, family support is particularly vital at this time for people who are ready to leave hospital and return home as this will help us support even more people as we know the best bed is an individual’s own in terms of recovery and retaining independence. Discharges will happen quicker with support from families.

Your loved one’s doctor will decide when they are medically ready to leave hospital and we wanted to provide you with early information regarding what arrangements will be in place to ensure they are kept safe and continue to improve through ongoing rehabilitation, if that is what they need.

The team providing your care will talk to your loved one further about this if additional therapy and/or care support is needed so you all know that a move is being planned. Clinicians will be on hand to support you with supporting their rehabilitation.

It would really help us if you could discuss how you can support your relative home from hospital as soon as they are well enough in line with the support bubble guidance. So if you have a family member or loved one being admitted to hospital, please start thinking about plans for their discharge at the outset and any contribution you can make to support this. 

We will support you to keep in touch with them, including using digital technology, whilst they are in hospital as face-to-face visiting is not currently available due to the regulations to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Thank you for your understanding and for working with us to ensure everyone who needs a hospital bed or community support can be helped at what is a difficult time for all of us.