Avoiding unnecessary hospital admissions: the headlines
This film explores the challenge of reducing hospital admissions for older people through contributions from a range of health and social care experts. Their reflections highlight the complex health needs of older people in this country, the need for responsive and joined-up health and social care services, and the role that home care staff can play in helping to identify deteriorating conditions that may result in a hospital admission. The film acknowledges that at a crisis point, hospital admission may be the only safe alternative but argues that integrated care, well-managed hospital stays, improved health provision in care homes, reablement, and self-management of health conditions can all play a part in reducing hospital admissions.
Messages for practice
- Older people often have complex health care needs which require a range of health and social care interventions, including hospital admissions when necessary.
- With the right training, support and access to health care input social care staff are well-placed to identify deteriorating conditions and help avoid some hospital admissions.
- Better management, including self-management, of long-term conditions, a swift response to acute illness, the provision of reablement, and improved community health provision to care home residents may help reduce the numbers of hospital admissions.
- Integrated health and social care services result in improved outcomes for individuals, but may not significantly reduce emergency admissions.
- Skilled and knowledgeable health and social care staff who work effectively together are crucial if the system is to cope with current and future pressures.
Who will find this useful?
- Health and social care commissioners and managers
- Social workers
- Occupational therapists
- GPs and community nurses
- Health and social care providers
- Health and social care policy leads