All services

Croydon Hospital Discharge

A lengthy stay in hospital can be traumatic, how much more so if you are discharged in to insecure accommodation or back out onto the street?

The Croydon Hospital Discharge project sees a Thames Reach staff member based at Croydon University Hospital, working with medical, social care and administrative staff both on wards and in the A&E department to avoid patients being discharged out onto the street.

The service offers a person-centred approach to hospital patients focusing on enabling and supporting individuals specifically with support needs related to housing and welfare benefits.

Staff work with both new and entrenched rough sleepers, people who are homeless, and people who are not entitled to claim housing and welfare benefits. Often the housing problem is complex and requires considerable liaison with departments and services outside of the hospital. The primary role of the Thames Reach link worker is to negotiate with the local authority housing team to secure suitable accommodation for individuals, expedite and support their recovery on discharge.

The discharge plan also includes on-going support after the patient has left hospital. In many cases, the continuity of support helps to settle the person into accommodation. This in turn improves a patient’s wellbeing and the chance of a full recovery from their physical illness, decreasing the chance of further hospital admission and breakdown of the accommodation.

This service has been successful in reducing the length of hospital stays and allowing people to be discharged when they are medically fit reducing inequality for homeless people and lessening the inflated costs created by delayed health care and poor housing.