Looking after elderly patients leaving hospital for home

Colleagues at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals (DBTH) are creating ‘Essentials Bags’ for elderly patients who are nearing discharge from an inpatient bed.

Suggested by Julie Wragg, Registered Nurse and Person Centred Care Practitioner, the care packages include essential items such as cleaning products, non-perishable foods and rolls of toilet paper. These are offered to older patients as they leave hospital who may have trouble getting out and about and don’t have nearby family to support them.

Julie said: “With anxiety around Coronavirus building, our elderly patients may find it difficult to get to the shops. We asked colleagues to donate a few bits, from hand soaps to cans of soup, so that we could pull together our Essentials Bags and offer them to our patients as and when they leave. In just one morning, we’ve received hundreds of items – I couldn’t be more proud of Team DBTH!”

With the success of the appeal so far, the Trust is not asking for any public donations and believes it has enough to create dozens of bags. Any surplus supplies will be donated to local food banks.

Julie continues: “Times like this show you what a kind and caring organisation we are – it is crucial that we make every effort to look after our most vulnerable patients and our NHS colleagues are always ready to go above and beyond. In the words of my grandad, in times like this we must wheel barrow – and push on!”

As part of its wider preparations for Coronavirus, the Trust has recently changed its policy on visiting, restricting this to one person per patient between the hours of 6pm and 7pm. Full details can be found on the organisations website, www.dbth.nhs.uk, which is updated daily.