Health watchdog launches survey into hospital discharge process

Scunthorpe General Hospital
Scunthorpe General Hospital

The public’s experience of being discharged from hospital in North Lincolnshire and the East Riding is being put under the microscope in a new survey by Healthwatch from this month.

The issue of being discharged from hospital or a mental health setting regularly arises as a priority among patients, their families and carers.

It has also been raised by local independent complaints advocates as well as through stakeholder forums. Now Healthwatch, the independent voice of the consumer in health and social care, is launching a questionnaire to find out more.

Different surveys are being used to learn about the experience from patients of arrangements that were made for discharge and what happened afterwards, as well as how service providers found the whole process.   

Questions will ask about the public’s experience over the last 12 months, good practice, the impact, the notice period, any referrals to other services and issues around finances.

Linsay Cunningham, delivery manager of Healthwatch, said: “We want to make this research as comprehensive as possible, working with various different organisations.

“The goal is to have findings from people of all ages and our results, when published in February 2017, will help the NHS trusts involved to improve their procedures.”

Details of the survey are online at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HealthwatchDischargeSurvey

It can also be completed at Healthwatch outreach events and print copies can be obtained through different partner organisations and returned free by post.

Completed questionnaires will be entered into a prize draw to win £50 in shopping vouchers.

Healthwatch East Riding of Yorkshire is working in conjunction with Healthwatch Hull and Healthwatch North Lincolnshire in collating the information from this same survey.