Step-down scheme at Lime Tree House: the patients’ perspective

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Southwark carried a number of engagement events, gathering the views of 4 patients who used the Lime Tree House service, between March and October 2016. The work was done as part of a programme of engagement on the step-down scheme that was piloted in Southwark to provide accommodation to patients upon hospital discharge. The report identifies a number of key issues. Information given to patients at hospital about the scheme was described as ‘not clear’, had little information what facility that patients would be going to, or when they would be moving. Some patients arriving at the facility had no support for their mobility issues. Settling in in the facility was a mixed experience. Some patients were pleased to leave hospital and be in the facility, while other patients were anxious because they had no information what to expect in the new facility. Equipment support had some problems, such as faulty Zimmer frame, or a mobile phone. Patients reported issues but problems were not solved for at least a week. Activities were arranged at the house, but they were not always appropriate. One patient with arthritis found it difficult to do art activities. There was no access to a computer. The quality of care was described as ‘rushed’, and ‘it takes a long time’ for staff to check on patients. One patient said, “[I would] probably better off in hospital with permanent supervision than here where you only have people popping in”. The report made several recommendations. The first 2 recommendations included: • All patients and carers/family are supported to make an informed choice about accepting a step-down flat. Written information about the step-down scheme should be given so that patients and carers/family can understand what is being offered, • Southwark Council should consider a care navigator scheme to support patients through step-down. This should include a named person who will visit the patient in hospital to ensure that accurate and useful information is given so that they understand each stage of the process. Patients should be able to contact this person easily to ask any questions and give their views. A response was received from Southwark CCG and Southwark Council.

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General details

Report title 
Step-down scheme at Lime Tree House: the patients’ perspective
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Southwark
Date of publication 
Thursday, 2 February, 2017
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 2 March, 2016
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 19 October, 2016
Type of report 
Report
Key themes 
Access
Continuity of care
Discharge
Quality of care
Healthwatch reference number 
Rep-1083

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
No
Primary research method used 
Observation
Unstructured Interview
User stories
How was the information collected? 
Visit to provider

Details of health and care services included in the report

Social care services 
Assisted living
Community services 
Continuing care

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
4
Age group 
All people over the age of 65
Gender 
All
Ethnicity 
All
Specific ethnicity if known 
All
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
No
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
No
Does the information include staff's views? 
No
Does the information include other people's views? 
No
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 
Mixed

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Yes
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Yes action has been taken or promised
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Yes
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known
What type of impact was determined? 
Implied Impact
Tangible impact (not cost related)

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.