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Improved hospital experience

Ward Manager Rebecca Goatley with patient John Gould.

Patients at Southend Hospital can expect a smoother and more active discharge home thanks to the opening of a new larger area for those preparing to leave.

Known as the Active Home Suite, staff continue to provide care for patients in the ward-like, but activity based setting, as they get them ready to go home or to their next place of care, which also helps free up beds elsewhere in the hospital for new patients coming in.

The area, which is larger than the old discharge lounge, is initially made up of 12 beds – soon to increase to 18 – and 12 comfy chairs, and has separate male and female sections.

One of the first patients to experience the new area is John Gould, from Southend. He said: “Staff have been brilliant and this new area makes a big difference.”

Rebecca Goatley, Ward Manager for the suite, said: “We’ve worked really hard to make the Active Home Suite a welcoming and brighter place for patients as they get ready to leave, with everything from table-top activities, group activities and a special interactive computer tablet to help dementia patients.

“The area is staffed by doctors, nurses and allied health professionals, under the direction of a senior nurse. We also have dedicated pharmacists visiting the suite, helping to speed up that discharge process and get patients their medication as quickly as possible.”

The suite will remain in use throughout winter, supporting the hospital’s work to discharge patients more quickly, which already includes the Southend Enhanced Discharge Service and Bridging Service.

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