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Poole LINk – Leaving Hospital Report

Poole LINk – Leaving Hospital Report

We've gathered the views of people leaving Poole Hospital - read our Leaving Hospital Report here:
>> Download Poole LINk Leaving Hospital Report
You can read Poole Hospital's response below.


What we did

The LINk gathered over 1200 comments from local people last year and 11% of that feedback related to Poole Hospital. The majority of these Poole Hospital comments related to older people’s care, information issues and leaving hospital.

More specific feedback was needed, so we decided to design a survey and ask older people, as they left hospital, what their experience had been.

For this project we worked with Poole Hospital Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS), Poole Hospital Matrons, Poole Hospital Questionnaire Review Panel, local care homes, domiciliary care agencies and support groups.

Hospital staff handed out 400 LINk surveys to everyone who left a Poole Hospital older people’s ward during July and August 2011.


Poole LINk would like to make the following recommendations to Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, based on the feedback & suggestions we’ve gathered:

1.   Information

Over half the LINk survey respondents did not receive written information about their care outside hospital, contact numbers or support services outside hospital. The LINk recommends that Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust improve the information that is given out to older people when they leave hospital by:

  • Working with the Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) to access the Health Information Library for patients.
  • Always providing written information, with contact phone numbers, about care outside hospital.
  • Publishing the discharge standards on Poole Hospitals website.
  • Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has also asked to work with Poole LINk to jointly redesign their patient discharge leaflet. 

2.   Co-ordination

Over a quarter of the survey respondents experienced a delay in their hospital discharge, mainly perceived as waiting for medicine or transport. There were 2 survey respondents whose home care didn’t arrive on the first day and one respondent who was taken home without a carer, when one was clearly needed.

Lack of co-ordination between services has a significant negative impact on patients, their families and carers. The LINk has also received feedback from care homes and sheltered housing schemes who would like to see improved hospital discharge co-ordination.

To improve co-ordination between services, we recommend that Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust work with Poole LINk to organise a networking event for the Hospitals discharge staff, social services, care homes, domiciliary care agencies, sheltered housing schemes and the local community and voluntary sector. 

3.   Loss of Personal Items

4 survey respondents told us that they had lost personal items, clothing and dentures, whilst in hospital. Although this is a small number, losing personal items can have a significant impact on patients, their families and carers.

The LINk recommends that the older people’s wards provide patients and their families with clearer information about how to look after personal items whilst in hospital. This information should include details of what to do if personal items go missing.

We would also encourage the older people’s wards to monitor the loss of patient’s personal items over the next 6 months, to see if improved information reduces the amount of lost property. 

4.   Follow up survey next year

The LINk would like to carry out a follow up survey this year. To improve on the response rate next time Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and the LINk will work together to find a better way of distributing the surveys.

Poole Hospital's response

Poole LINks ‘Leaving Hospital’ Report: Response from Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust dated 29/2/12

I write on behalf of Chris Bown, our Chief Executive, in response to your report on leaving hospital which we received on 16th January 2012.

The Trust is grateful to LINk for organising the survey and facilitating the response. The Trust notes the very disappointing response rate of just 8%, notwithstanding we have given serious consideration to the issues raised. The Trust would be pleased to help the LINk in future surveys to try and boost response rates.

In respect of the recommendations in the report the Trust would like to comment as follows:-

Recommendation 1: This recommendation is accepted.

Recommendation 2: The Trust accepts that co-ordination between agencies needs to be improved and would like to work with the LINk to explore the best ways of achieving this.

Recommendation 3: This recommendation is accepted.

Recommendation 4: This recommendation is accepted subject to discussion between the Trust and LINk about improving response rates.

Mandy Leigh, our discharge matron, will be coordinating the work between LINk and the Trust on discharge. She will also be pleased to discuss the action we are taking and further action we need to take.

My thanks to LINk, on behalf of the Trust, for this important contribution to improving discharge services from Poole Hospital for the benefit of patients and their families/carers.

Director of Nursing and Patient Services

For more information

For more information you can download the full report or contact Lou at the Poole LINk on

Poole LINk Report