Summary of report content
Healthwatch Stockton-on-Tees wanted to understand local experience of the altered hospital discharge process during the Covid-19 pandemic. They undertook surveys of patients and carers and relatives.
Three in five patients locally did not receive information about the new discharge procedure. Those who did receive such information found it to be clear and easy to understand.
Three in five patients who responded said they were not asked if they needed transport upon discharge.
Four in five patients who responded to our survey did not receive a follow up assessment visit
Two in five patients told us that they were not provided with information about who they should contact if they needed health information or support. One person reported that they still had unmet needs.
Three in five patients had to wait over 2 hours after being told they were medically fit for discharge. The main reasons given being a wait for medication or transport.
Some carers felt communication with hospital staff was difficult, but others felt much more involved.
Research with care homes suggests that there was some communication with service providers during the period that a resident was in hospital and about the proposed discharge arrangements. However, it was disappointing to hear of a resident being discharged to a care home late at night, without belongings and most importantly without any medication.
There were 9 recommendations setting out the steps to be taken when someone leaves hospital to ensure that they are fully supported.