We’re ready for winter

17 Dec 2015 Emily Cope

We’ve launched a range of new services to support you as winter approaches. These services will help patients who go into hospital to get home again more quickly, by offering them support and appropriate ongoing healthcare in the community.

As winter approaches, we’ve been preparing our
services for this inevitably busy time of year. As the largest
provider of community healthcare in Bristol, we play a
vital role in supporting our hospitals and other local health
partners when the demand for healthcare rises – and the
cold weather sets in.

Our new services will play a vital role in getting patients
out of hospital more quickly, and back into the community
or in their own home.

Our teams ‘reaching in’ to hospitals
For patients who are admitted into A&E, we have
developed our REACT In-Reach teams to work in our local
hospital wards to help identify those patients who could
be better cared for in the community. These services not
only ensure patients are more comfortable and better
supported, but it also reduces the pressure on our hospitals
at a time when they are at their busiest. Read more about
the REACT In-Reach team here.

Assessing you in the community
We have also launched an innovative new service called
Discharge to Assess, which we’re offering in partnership
with Bristol City Council and University Hospitals Bristol. This
service assesses patients in their home, a rehabilitation
facility or other place of residence to establish their health
needs after they have been discharged from hospital. For
patients, this means getting better in familiar surroundings,
and feeling assured that they are receiving care that is
tailored to their needs.

We also support the NHS campaign ‘Stay Well This
Winter’, which aims to help you avoid going into hospital
at all. It is important, if you are in a vulnerable group, to
have your flu jab, and to make sure you always have your
prescribed medicines in the cupboard. At the first signs of
feeling ill, visit your pharmacist for advice. Remember; only
visit A&E if you are suffering a life-threatening illness or

Am I eligible for the flu jab?
You can get it FREE from your GP if you:
• are 65+ years old
• are pregnant
• have certain medical conditions
• are very overweight
• are living in a long-stay residential care home
• are the main carer for an elderly or disabled
• are a frontline health and social care worker
(ask your employer)