Fix Dementia Care: Hospitals

2. Cross-party parliamentary committee backs our recommendations to end unsafe discharge from hospitals

On 28 September, a committee made up of parliamentarians from Labour, Conservative and Scottish National Party published a report that concluded that night discharges between 11pm and 6am are "potentially dangerous" for patients and called on the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, to take action.

Their report was heavily based on the evidence given by Alzheimer's Society Senior Policy Officer, Andrew Boaden, at the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman investigation hearing in the summer.

Pacac report excerpt

Our Hospitals report, launched earlier this year, denounced how thousands of people with dementia are being discharged from hospitals between the hours of 11pm and 6am each year and how important it is that hospitals make data available to better understand both the extent to which patients are discharged before they are ready, and the relationship between early discharge and readmission.

Chairman of the Committee, Bernard Jenkin MP, says:

'Hospital staff seem to feel pressured to discharge patients before it is safe to do so. Hospital leadership must reassure their staff that organisational pressures never take priority over person-centred care. And staff need to feel a level of trust and openness that enables them to raise concerns about unsafe discharge.'

A Department of Health spokesperson said:

'Patients should only be discharged from hospital when it's clinically appropriate and safe for them and their families - and the best way to ensure that is to meaningfully integrate health and social care. We are investing billions to do so over the course of this Parliament to improve the experience of patients, many of whom will be vulnerable.'

This is great news for people living with dementia and we will continue to work with the Government and the Health Minister to ensure this recommendations are made a reality.