Background More than 13,000 beds were occupied by patients who did not meet the criteria to be in hospital in December 2022 (NHS England, 2022) and this number is a quarter higher than the data from the year previously. The Office for National Statistics (2023) reports that due to winter pressures patients are waiting longer for treatments and that this had a negative impact on their life. St Giles Hospice were approached by a local Integrated Care Board (ICB) to provide extra bed capacity to the system for patients to either be stepped up from home or stepped down from hospital to assist with winter pressures.
Aims To review and evaluate the use of hospice beds provided for winter pressures within the local health economy.
Methods St Giles Hospice opened two extra winter pressure beds at the beginning of January 2023. This was a collaborative venture with a local ICB to increase bed capacity and release pressure from local acute trusts. To ensure efficient bed flow to maximise output and utilisation, a set referral was produced with partners. St Giles joined the local urgent and emergency care daily calls to identify any potential patients that may require bed support and weekly meetings were held to discuss progress and identify any issues.
Results Results from this collaborative project include: Six patients admitted into beds – admissions ranged from treatment for infections and longer term placement. All referrals admitted on the same day. Two referrals were for longer term care and opened up access to other hospice services that would not have been available previously. Presented success at Urgent and Emergency Care Board.
Conclusions Discussions are progressing to identify how St Giles can support the wider health care system for the winter 2023/2024.
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