Working in partnership with The Basement, Liverpool YMCA, Big Life Group, Brownlow Group Practice and local hospitals, the project will build upon existing models of good practice to ensure homeless people who are discharged from hospital do not return to the street.
The project, which is initially funded until the end of March 2014, will provide Hospital Outreach Workers based with in both Whiston and Royal Liverpool Hospital. These workers will contact patients, undertake assessments of need and work to find appropriate housing. To maximise housing options and prevent any delay in discharge, the service will be able to access four new ring-fenced beds that have been identified across the region.
It is estimated that homeless people attend A&E up to six times more than people with a home. Currently 70% of homeless people are discharged from hospital without their housing or on-going care needs being suitably addressed. The Hospital Outreach Workers will ensure patients are linked into primary care services, helping ensure appropriate follow up care, in order to reduce future hospital admissions.
David Carter, Chief Executive of The Whitechapel Centre said, “We are delighted that this funding has been made available. The Hospital Discharge Project will play a significant part in breaking the cycle of poor health and homelessness and allow us to intervene before the client returns to the street. We already work closely with the NHS and we are delighted to strengthen our partnerships with local services even further.”