We may be called Healthwatch Bucks – but we also want to know what people think about social care.

The lowdown

Last week, Bucks County Council’s Health and Adult Social Care Committee of which we are a member, presented a report investigating the hospital discharge process in Bucks. It identified a number of measures to improve the process including closer joint working between health and social care teams and better sharing of information with patients and their families.

Read the full report

Not only do delayed discharges reduce the quality of the service for patients themselves, but they also put pressure on the healthcare system as a whole by blocking hospital beds that are needed for other patients.

We were particularly pleased that a recommendation has been made to undertake a more in-depth piece of research to better understand the patient and family/carer experience and to help with targeting the improvements; a measure which Healthwatch Bucks considers integral to improving the discharge process and something we will be working hard on over the coming year.

The Inquiry Group also wanted to encourage families to have discussions around care planning and securing the relevant legal paperwork.  This would mean that families, carers and patients would know what to do if a crisis did happen.


Have you had experience of the discharge process?  What stops us from having these conversations in advance?

Get in touch and let us know what you think.

Published on 28 Mar, 2017 (updated 2 Apr, 2020)

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