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Implementing a hospital-at-home service to improve patient outcomes

11 November 2021
Volume 30 · Issue 20

In 2018, it was identified that the acute Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust (MTW) needed to create extra capacity because of patient demand, without the financial or staffing implications associated with increasing inpatient beds. A pilot project was run for 6 months over the winter of 2018 to 2019 to set up a hospital-at-home service as a model of care that would allow patients to leave the acute hospital once they were clinically stable, and complete the remainder of their care pathway at their normal place of residence.

The project was in line with the NHS Long Term Plan (NHS England/NHS Improvement, 2019), which sets out the need to redesign community services to improve care outside of hospitals and the need to integrate care to meet the needs of the ageing population.

For the pilot, appropriate patients would be discharged from an acute bed, but would remain the responsibility of the hospital consultant and any concerns or changes in the patient's condition would be discussed, and a medical review in the hospital arranged if necessary.

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