Annual General Meeting and Review of the Year 2019

Friday July 12, 2019

Clinicians to explain at AGM how they improved hospital admissions and discharges for thousands more patients

Thousands more patients were discharged before 3pm from Worthing Hospital and St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester last year, thanks to an innovative improvement project led by staff at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The “Putting patients first through earlier discharges home” initiative has benefitted hospital patients ready to leave and new patients in in need of emergency care, as well as hospital staff and the wider health system.

On Thursday 25 July, from 6-8pm at St Richard’s Hospital, the trust is inviting people to find out more about this successful improvement project at its Annual General Meeting and Review of the Year 2019.

Our teams have  improved patient experience for thousands of people

Chief executive Dame Marianne Griffiths will open proceedings with a reflection on 2018/19 before taking questions from the audience at the event in the Chichester Medical Education Centre (CMEC).

The centre-piece of this year’s agenda is a clinical-presentation from doctors, nurses and therapists who will explain the benefits for patients delivered by their earlier discharge improvement project.

For example, in the past year, 16 pilot wards discharged 3,600 more patients (+48%) before 3pm, than in the year before. And, 2,284 fewer patients (-20%) waited more than 4 hours in A&E, despite attendances increasing by 4% over the same period.

Chief medical officer, Dr George Findlay, said: “Our staff have worked very hard over the past year to develop new solutions to old problems that have unfortunately become common in hospitals throughout England.

“I am very proud that consequently we have been able to discharge thousands more patients during the day when more comprehensive community, social and primary care services are available to support them.

“These patients also had improved access to the trust’s discharge lounges, as well as community and NHS transport services. And importantly, they had more time to settle in at home before night-time, which means neighbours and loved ones could visit on their first day out of hospital.

“Their discharge was therefore safer, and this is especially true for our many older frail patients and those with dementia.”

Traditionally, the average time that patients are discharged from hospital has been around 5pm, but the peak time patients from A&E require admission is much earlier, approximately 10.30am.

The improvement project aimed to address this imbalance by devising new ways of joint-working that enable earlier discharges. This, in turn, means more specialist ward beds become available earlier in the day when they are most needed. In the first year of the project, this amounted to nearly 3,600 more beds for patients requiring urgent admission from A&E.

Dr Findlay added: “As a result, these patients benefited from transferring to specialty care teams in the day-time when the full ward team is present, with more consultant, therapeutic, pharmacy, diagnostic and equipment support available.

“Our teams have therefore improved patient experience for thousands of people in the last 12 months, providing safer and quicker admission to our specialist medical wards.”

The AGM clinical presentation will also explain how the “Putting patients first through earlier discharges home” project helped Western Sussex Hospital achieve the 9th best A&E performance in England and earn £16m from the national Provider Sustainability Transformation fund in 2018/19.

The Annual General Meeting of the Council of Governors and Annual Members Meeting 2019 takes place on Thursday 25 July, at St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester, in the Chichester Medical Education Centre, (CMEC).

Refreshments will be served from 6pm at which time attendees can visit information stands and talk to staff, governors and members of the trust board. The meeting will begin at 6.30pm.

The agenda will be available on www.westernsussexhosptials.nhs.uk. To book your free place, please email events@wsht.nhs.uk or call 01903 205111 ext. 84038. Thank you.

Attendees arriving by car are advised to enter the hospital grounds by entrance No.2 signposted for Maternity. Parking in the North Car Park behind CMEC will be free of charge for attendees.

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