Getting home safer sooner

Media Release  7 August 2019 | Hospital in the Home, a Counties Manukau Health initiative enabling some people to be cared for in their own homes, is getting the thumbs up from patients and staff.

The new service allows patients who are medically safe to leave the hospital but still require treatment, to return home and recover in their own environment whilst still under the care of a hospital doctor and experienced nurses.

“I like being at home, I can never get out of hospital quick enough”, says Papakura resident Faye Kelsen. Faye has been living with congestive heart failure for years and has experienced her share of hospital stays.

“It’s been fantastic to be able to get home sooner, I improve faster. Just to be able to be in my own surroundings, to look at my photos, to have my friends and family – especially my granddaughters – pop in. Last time I was in hospital for one week and I couldn’t sleep. At home I sleep so much better," says Faye.

Hospital in the Home consultant physician Dr Harry Rea says that the Hospital in the Home approach is safe and accelerates patients’ recovery and rehabilitation. “Apart from being in their own environment with their family, they are very closely monitored, experience continuity of care – they see the same nurse everyday – and move around more than they would if they were lying in a bed in hospital.”

Patients with COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), heart failure and other long-term conditions are benefiting from an earlier discharge under the Hospital in the Home pathway.  Hospital clinicians identify patients suitable for Hospital in the Home and establish an individualised treatment and escalation plan, an experienced nurse visits the patient at home to monitor their recovery and provide ongoing treatment. 

“The patient leaves the hospital with an individualised care plan. Apart from monitoring the patient closely every day, we provide education and keep them motivated to follow their recovery plan”, says Anna Mastrovich, the Nurse Practitioner in charge of Faye’s recovery.

Anna liaises with Dr Harry every day. She can also call on support from other health professionals, such as physiotherapists, to ensure all medical and social supports are in place to enable the patient to recover within their home environment. 

“I have a hospital bed and the nurses come to see me every day, sometimes more than once a day. It’s like a hospital, but at home. My family are also pleased as they have a contact number of the nurse and know they can call anytime”, says Faye.

When the patient no longer requires this service, the Hospital in the Home team hands the care over to their family doctor and another service can continue care, such as complex case or reablement.

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community outpatients hospital in homes copd

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