What happens when the person you care for is discharged from hospital

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Kent spoke to carers to find out what happened when the person they look after was discharged from hospital in Kent. Their key findings include:

  • There is poor communication between hospital and carers
  • Carers are not always involved in the patient’s care and they also struggle to access social care and mobility equipment
  • Many carers do not receive guidance or information about providing patient with ongoing care at home
  • Medication can be unavailable, not ready at point of discharge or often incorrect
  • Carers would like to feel acknowledged, included and asked how they were coping

Healthwatch Kent have made three recommendations:

  • All Kent NHS Trusts to host accurate, up-to-date information on their websites which people who find themselves as carers can access easily and understand what support is available and where to get it.
  • Hospital discharge areas to have up-to-date and accurate leaflets & posters with information on carer support services including accessing social care, mobility equipment and emotional support services.
  • Healthwatch Kent will share some good practices they have heard of, so that everyone can learn and benefit from it.


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General details

Report title 
What happens when the person you care for is discharged from hospital
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Kent
Date of publication 
Tuesday, 19 April, 2022
Date evidence capture began 
Friday, 13 May, 2022
Date evidence capture finished 
Friday, 13 May, 2022
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Continuity of care
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Other information of note about this report 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Primary research method used 
Structured interview
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 
Inpatient care
Social care services 
Adult social care
Other services 
Equipment service

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Not known
Not known
Not known
Sexual orientation 
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 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to 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.