People's experience of leaving Worcestershire hospitals during Covid-19

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Worcestershire wanted to understand how hospital discharge in Worcestershire is working from a patient and carer’s perspective. Through 127 Survey responses and 15 qualitative interviews, Healthwatch Worcestershire gathered the views of 142 patients and carers who had experienced a discharge from a Worcestershire hospital between March 2020 and April 2021. They interviewed 5 care providers and 24 NHS and social care staff.

Key Findings:

  • To thirds of survey respondents did not receive written information about the new discharge process during their hospital stay.
  • Some patients felt that their discharge from hospital was rushed; nearly one in three (29%) people felt they were not prepared to leave. Over half (56%) of people who said they had a significantly worse experience of leaving hospital than they had previously, felt that they were not prepared to leave hospital.
  • 37% of respondents waited over 4 hours to leave hospital, and of these, 8% waited over 8 hours. The two main reasons for waiting, across both acute hospitals, were for transport arrangements and medication.
  • 53% of respondents to the survey were not given information about who to contact if they needed further health advice or support after leaving hospital, despite the national guidance stating this should happen.

Healthwatch Worcestershire made a number  of recommendations in this report.

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General details

Report title 
People's experience of leaving Worcestershire hospitals during Covid-19
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Worcestershire
Date of publication 
Wednesday, 25 August, 2021
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 21 January, 2021
Date evidence capture finished 
Tuesday, 27 April, 2021
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Continuity of care
Holistic support
Information providing
Integration of services
Service delivery organisation and staffing

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Healthwatch England
Primary research method used 
Structured interview

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 
Acute services with overnight beds
Discharge lounge
Inpatient care

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
25-64 years
65-85 years
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Care / support workers
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.