New approach to ensure people receive the right care when leaving hospital

23rd November 2023

A new programme to help improve the way people are discharged from hospital back into the community, has been launched.

The Right Care NoW approach aims to streamline the discharge process, reducing the length of time people stay in hospital, decreasing their need to be readmitted and improving their overall experience.

This has been established after listening to Norfolk and Waveney staff and patients and is part of one of the ambitions of the Joint Forward Plan.

Through transforming discharge, the ambition is to reduce the number of beds occupied in our local acute hospitals to 92% or fewer. This will give hospitals more capacity to care for people arriving at hospital, people awaiting elective care and will provide resilience to the health and care system.

By reducing hospital stays and investing in home care and reablement, our system can create a more sustainable way of working and less reliance on surge or escalation beds. The ICB is engaging with system partners to ensure a balanced approach to Right Care NoW, while meeting the needs of our community.

For many people who have received hospital treatment and are ready to leave, the right care should be either in their own home with or without care support, or to an appropriate care facility. This transition process is important to help people to regain their independence and adjust to living with or after an illness or injury.

Our ‘home first’ principle lies at the heart of our discharge planning. Whether it’s returning people to their own homes or finding a more suitable living arrangement, our priority is people’s wellbeing. We understand the importance of effective communication and planning, which is why we will discuss patient’s discharge date in advance, allowing them to coordinate with caregivers and loved ones.

One of the first actions of the Right Care NoW programme is the introduction of a digital solution called Optica to acute trusts and discharge hubs which will help us have all the information we need about the patient in one place during their discharge from hospital. It will mean patients only have to tell their story once.

We are transforming the system to enhance the quality of care we provide and ensure a smoother transition for all our patients as they move between their places of care. We will update you further as plans progress as this will require a whole system approach.

You can hear Tricia D’Orsi, the ICB’s Executive Director of Nursing talk more about this programme via this video.