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Improving Urgent Care

Patient Flow Centre 


As part of the Well Connected Improving Patient Flow programme within Worcestershire it has been agreed to set up an integrated patient flow centre. 

This centre, to be based at Wildwood in Worcester, will make it easier to ensure we give patients the right care in the right place at the right time across the whole health and social care system.

The centre aims to provide a link between the organisations (Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Worcestershire Health and Care Trust, and Worcestershire County Council) and support a systematic process for dealing with capacity and demand issues.


How we manage patient flow at the moment

 
 

We currently have a capacity ‘hub’ based at Worcestershire Royal Hospital, where bed meetings take place several times a day to understand how many patients are in the county’s acute hospital beds at any one time, and how many are ready to be discharged. This helps determine where beds can be freed up for patients who need admitting after arrival in A&E, and where beds need to be found within the county’s community hospitals or social care if the patient is not ready to go home. 

It is often difficult to get a clear picture of expected discharges. Further, the information about the number of beds available within community hospitals or social care is currently held by the organisation responsible for them, which means there is never an overall live picture of demand and capacity across the county. This is critical if we are to ensure that patient flow is managed as efficiently as possible, reducing any unnecessary delays. There is also no visible capacity information around community teams or care homes.

How the new centre will improve patient flow 

The Patient Flow Centre will collect, review and act on all data from across the whole health and social care system related to bed and service capacity and demand. It will provide one single source of real time admission, transfer and discharge data that every organisation can access and act on. This will help us ensure that patients who no longer need acute hospital care can be transferred from a hospital bed to an appropriate community resource, including home, in a timely way. 

How will this benefit patients?

A more efficient way of managing patient flow will make it easier for us to ensure patients receive the right care in the right place at the right time across the whole health and social care system. There will be fewer inappropriate admissions to acute hospitals, and patients who are admitted will be transferred to the most appropriate setting for their on-going care as soon as they no longer need acute hospital care.   

How will this impact on staff?

The availability of the county’s entire capacity and demand information in one place should free up clinical time, by making the admission, transfer and discharge process much more efficient. Robust admission avoidance will relieve pressures on the Emergency Departments, especially at WRH.

All processes that are currently manual (IT), or paper based, will be transferred into electronic processes, captured in the right tool and then fed into a dash board.

Real time updating of admission, transfer and discharge information across all health and social care settings will be critical to ensure that the information that flows into the patient flow centre is valid and reliable. 

Download a hard-copy of the above case study. 

For more information about this pilot contact: 

Ruth Davoll - Urgent Care Strategy Lead, South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group 

David Allison - Transformation Lead - Unscheduled Care, Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust 

Mari Gay - Director of Quality & Patient Safety, South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group 

Patient Flow downloadable materials 

How does the centre work? (flowchart) 
Patient Flow Centre poster 
Patient Flow Centre poster (A3) 
Patient Flow Centre poster (A3) V2
Patient Flow Centre Transport poster 
Patient Flow Centre Transport poster V2
Patient Flow Centre Discharge Planning poster 
Patient Flow Centre Coming into Hospital poster 


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