Monday 24 June 2024
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NUH asks for support to get your loved ones home for the festive season

Ahead of the Christmas and New Year period, Nottingham University Hospitals Trust (NUH) is asking for public support in getting more patients safely home in time for the festive season.

NUH said:

‘We know that often the best place for patients to recover is in their own homes and surroundings rather than being in hospital. There’s lots that loved ones and friends can do to help get their friend or relative home.’

This includes;

  • Helping to arrange for your relative, friend or loved one to be collected from hospital and take them home
  • Making sure they have a key to get into their property
  • Making sure they have groceries at home to support their recovery
  • Making sure they have the right clothes and shoes to leave hospital in, that they have all the medications they need and that their heating is on when they get home.
  • You can also speak to staff about the suitability of their home and any equipment that may be needed to support their recovery.

Dr Keith Girling, Medical Director at NUH said: “We have put a range of measures in place this winter to help get patients home. These include expanding our Virtual Wards, which mean patients can go home sooner whilst still being monitored virtually and opening our new 24/7 Transfer of Care Unit, which provides a comfortable setting for patients whilst they are waiting for things like transport or medications, instead of them waiting on the wards.

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“We know families can be concerned that they are unable to properly look after their loved one at home or are concerned that their loved one ‘isn’t ready’ or is ‘not back to how they were before’. We want to reassure people that hospital, community and social care teams are here to support them and their loved ones to return home including supporting any ongoing care needs, so please ask us questions and be part of the planning process to get your loved ones home.

“We are calling on patients and their families to help us get them home as soon as possible once they no longer need the care provided in hospital. We know that for recovery – both physically and psychologically – being out of hospital is best for patients, where they have their support networks and usual routines.”

Families can also help by engaging with the team caring for their relative as soon as possible to start to discuss plans for their discharge from hospital. This will help alleviate concerns or questions and might include simple clarification such as ‘are family members able to pick them up on the day of their discharge?

There are a number of organisations who can support people (and families and carers) returning home after a stay in hospital. These include:

People can also can help to reduce pressure on the NHS by continuing to use the most appropriate service and only calling 999 or visiting hospital Emergency Departments in a genuine life-threatening emergency, such as a heart attack, suspected stroke or breathing difficulties.

If you need urgent advice you can use the NHS 111 online service or alternatively call 111 if you cannot get online. NHS 111 can also help if you think you need to visit a minor injury unit to treat broken bones, burns and bites.

Other ways to help include:

  • Using your pharmacist for minor conditions such as coughs, colds, ear aches and rashes
  • Getting fully vaccinated against COVID-19 including taking up the offer to get your booster
  • Staying away from hospitals if you have coronavirus symptoms, vomiting or diarrhoea.

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