New resource pack to support OTs on hospital discharge
A new resource pack has been launched to advise OTs on hospital discharge.
The Hospital 2 Home resource pack has several pieces of literature aimed at separate professional groups, including one for community-based occupational therapists and social workers, and another for hospital-based staff.
The COT-endorsed pack is intended to support older patients in returning home safely after a hospital stay and reduce the risk of readmission to hospital. The pack includes information, advice, case studies and check lists.
Kate Sheehan, an independent OT who contributed to the pack, says that housing was a key area to prioritise in discharge: ‘Housing is often not considered as a fundamental element of discharge. Actually whether it’s our own home, or a residential or nursing home, it plays a critical part in discharge. Often when it is considered, it’s only when it is a problem. If the professionals organising discharge sort it from the beginning as part of their integral process, we’ll have much better discharges.
‘From an OT perspective, have you looked at how their occupational performance is carried out in the home? Basic things: can they get in and out, can they wash and dress, can they meet their basic needs.
‘If they can’t, or if the house is in an unhealthy state that is causing them to be readmitted, then you have to address that at the very beginning. This information helps them to start that process.’
Launching the pack, Norman Lamb, care and support minister, said: ‘We recognise that any delay in being able to leave hospital after treatment is distressing for patients and costly to the NHS.
‘People need to be able to return to a home that is safe, warm and meets their needs, and this is particularly important in the case of older people.
‘In order to achieve this health, housing and social care must work in partnership.’
The pack was produced by a task group initiated by Care & Repair England, supported by England’s Department of Health and the Department for Communities and Local Government.
Representatives of COT contributed to the pack's development. Other contributors include the Chartered Institute of Housing, Age UK, Foundations and the Kings Fund.
You can download the pack at the Housing LIN website.