How can you achieve the aspiration of a ‘44% reduction in bed days’ as stated in your plan?
We would emphasise that this was very much an early aspiration, but it is based on a bed audit across south west London which found that 44% of patients in hospital beds did not need to be in hospital and could have been better supported elsewhere.
Of course, for this to work we would need to ensure that the right support was in place to reduce the need for hospital care. Key areas of work to support this include:
- The development of locality teams. Multi-disciplinary teams supporting populations of at least 50,000 people – including GPs, primary care, community health, mental health, social care and outreach from acute. People at risk of hospital admission, with complex needs, will be proactively identified and the team will co-develop a care plan with these people to support them in the community.
- Integrated intermediate care and crisis response services to support people in the community. This will reduce the need for hospital admissions and allow patients to return home to continue their recovery as soon as they are well enough to leave hospital.
- Much better support for people to look after themselves and, longer term, prevent the development of long term conditions where possible.
Only after carrying out this work will we know how many beds we need in our hospitals and the community. In line with national guidance, we will not be reducing bed numbers in hospital until we know we have alternative services in place.