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There's no place like home - help get your relatives back home in time for Easter

Health chiefs are calling on friends, families and carers of relatives who are ready and safe to be discharged from hospital to lend a helping hand in getting them out of hospital and back home in time for Easter.

In many cases, patients in our hospitals are ready and well enough to be discharged. 
However, they cannot leave as the support is not in place at home – which is where friends, family and carers could step in by providing appropriate, temporary support – and anyone who could provide this is very much encouraged to make contact with the nurse in charge of their loved-one’s care.

Hospital teams and social workers will liaise with anyone able to provide this support, to ensure that they too are supported and to deliver a long-term solution for the patient’s welfare and recovery.

Richard Watson, deputy chief officer, Suffolk and North East Essex Integrated Care System, said: “Hospital staff across the patch are doing an incredible job during this historically challenging time, but we know that their burden could be lessened if we could discharge those medically fit patients who remain in hospital only because the support they need at home is not yet in place.

“No one likes being in hospital and we know that recovery is better and speedier at home. So, I urge anyone who could offer support to a loved one who is well enough to go home to come forward – they’ll not only be helping that patient on the road to recovery, they’ll also be giving a big boost to the staff at our local hospitals, meaning they can focus all their efforts on the very sickest patients who need their care.”

Dr Paul Molyneux, medical director at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust said: “Once patients are ready for discharge, we know how important it is that they return home as it’s the best location for their recovery. Our Trust, like many up and down the country, has been extremely busy, and there is likely to be additional demand on our system during and after the bank holiday.

“If friends, families and carers are able to support the safe discharge of patients who are well enough to go home, we would really welcome their help and would advise they contact with the nurse in charge of their loved-one’s care.”

Giles Thorpe is Chief Nurse at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT), which runs Colchester and Ipswich hospitals.

He said: “There really is no place like home and getting our patients, if they are well enough, home for Easter is a big priority for us. 

“No one wants to be in hospital any longer than they need to be, and if they can spend precious time with their families instead of being in one of our hospitals over the long weekend then we want to get them there. This will also help us with admitting people who may need to come to our A&E departments for urgent care and treatment.

“If you can help to get someone you love home safely so they can continue their recovery there, we will support you every step of the way with making that happen. 

“We’ll also work closely with our partners across the Suffolk and North East Essex Integrated Care System (ICS) to make sure patients who can be discharged out of hospital leave our care quickly and safely.”

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