The Discharge Hub has been operating, as a pilot, in Bucks since May 2023. Through the Hub, patients are discharged from hospital to a hub bed in a Buckinghamshire care home. When they are ready, they then move back ‘home.’ ‘Home’ may be where people lived before going into hospital or may be new e.g. moving into a care home. In a hub bed, a multidisciplinary team (MDT) provide patients with support.

The hub beds provide care for:

  1. Patients with complex health needs that prevent discharge assessment within 4 weeks, and it is inappropriate to wait in acute hospital (e.g. delirium, fractures affecting mobility)
  2. Flexible support for discharge from acute hospitals (e.g. a delay in placement to a care home following hospital assessment).

The aim is for patients’ length of stay, in these hub beds, to be up to 28 days (up to 70 days for more complex cases).

What we did

We wanted to know about the experiences of people who have used these beds managed by the Discharge Hub. We wanted to understand what worked for them and what they would want to change.  We developed a set of questions with the team responsible for the pilot. We started the conversation with the patient and/or nominated representative (usually a relative) once they moved from hospital to a hub bed. We went to the location where the patient was living to talk with them. We also talked with family members, usually by phone. The subsequent conversations took place after approximately another 2 and 4 weeks. All of our conversations took place between 21 November 2023 to 6 February 2024.  We talked with 16 patients occupying discharge hub beds in three care homes. We also talked, by phone, with 18 relatives.

Key Findings

  • Many of the relatives told us about issues during their loved ones stay in hospital, prior to their transfer to a hub bed.
  • Looking back, after their loved one had moved out of a discharge hub bed, three quarters of the relatives we spoke to said they were satisfied with the hub bed stay.

Summary of Findings

  1. Hospital discharge
  2. Integration of services and communication between professionals
  3. Communication with patients /families
  4. Choice, user involvement and being listened to
  5. Caring, kindness, and respect
  6. Quality of treatment
  7. Follow on treatment and continuity of care


Please download the full report for details of each finding

Discharge Hub Beds Report

BOB ICB, BHT and Frimley NHS Foundation Trust’s response to our Discharge Hub Beds report

Published on 6 Mar (updated 25 Apr)

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