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Home First

Hospitals are where you get treated and home is where you get well.

Research has shown that you can recover much faster at home in a familiar environment as your own bed is the best bed for recovery. Hospitals are where you get treated and home is where you get well.


We will assess you on arrival to confirm your health needs and set an Expected Discharge Date (EDD) – this is the date that we anticipate that you will be ready to go home or be cared for in a different setting.You and, if you would like them to be involved, your family/carers, should begin to plan for what will happen when you leave – This is also known as ‘being discharged’ - using the EDD date as a guide.You may be discharged before that date if you are recovering more quickly than we thought – Remember that your own bed is the best bed for recovery.
During your time with us, we will work with you on a course of treatment and rehabilitation. We will help you to access information and advice to help decide your next steps.
Once your current needs have been addressed, you will be ready to go home or to be cared for in a different setting. At this point we will discharge you following the discharge plan that we agreed with you earlier in your stay.
During your stay

Our multi-disciplinary team (MDT) – including medical professionals, nurses, social care practitioners and therapists - will work with you to address your health needs on an ongoing basis during your stay.

A therapist will meet with you to discuss your personal goals and will develop, with you, a specific rehabilitation programme. This may include exercises to complete on your own and also group activities. You may not see a therapist every day however, all staff will support your rehabilitation plan. We strongly encourage you to continue your exercises and group activities every day to improve your independence and build your confidence to return home.

Returning home

Using the EDD as a guide, you and (if you consent for them to be involved) your family, friends and carers, should begin to plan for when you leave – known as ‘being discharged’. Please talk on a regular basis with the staff on the unit about your plans for discharge.

You can nominate someone else - such as a family member - to discuss discharge arrangements for you or ask the ward staff to arrange for an independent advocate to help plan your discharge with you.

We will give you access to information, advice and support to help with making your arrangements, including voluntary services who can help smooth your transition to home e.g. by ensuring your heating is turned on and that you have milk in the fridge etc.

We encourage family members or friends to drive their loved ones home and will liaise with them to agree the best time/ date. However if, due to your ongoing health needs, it would be inappropriate for a friend or family member to drive you home then the staff will organise a suitable patient transport vehicle to take you home.


What happens if I need further support to return home?

Community services can provide supported discharge to address health and care needs when you first return home. If it’s agreed that you’ll need these services, they will be arranged for you before you leave inpatient care.

Norfolk First Support, a reablement service, can support you in your own home for up to six weeks after you leave hospital. This will help you regain the skills and confidence to live as independently as possible. For more information on this, contact your county council on the following numbers:

Norfolk County Council: 0344 800 8020

Suffolk County Council: 0800 917 1109

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) based at each trust can give more detail on these services:

NHS Norfolk Community Health and Care
Call: 0800 088 4449 or email:

James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Call: 01493 453240 or email

Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust
Call: 0800 279 7257 or email:

Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals
Call: 01603 289036 or 01603 289045 or email

Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King’s Lynn
Call: 01553 613351 or 01553 613343 or email:

East Coast Community Healthcare
Call: 01502 445447 or email:


Download a copy of the leaflet here

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ECCH Communications team

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