JOHN HOWELL says caring for patients at home rather than keeping them in hospital can be a “safer
JOHN HOWELL says caring for patients at home rather than keeping them in hospital can be a “safer alternative”.
The Henley MP gave his backing to the ambulatory care model, like that installed at the town’s new Townlands Hospital, at a meeting with the Royal College of Physicians earlier this month.
He said long hospital stays could be dangerous for some patients, especially the elderly, who could be put at risk by unfamiliar surroundings, increasing the risk of illness or even death.
Families also often prefer to have their relatives treated at home.
Mr Howell said: “Research suggests that up to 40 per cent of those who die in hospital could have had their needs better managed in a non-hospital setting.
“The Royal College of Physicians is actively encouraging doctors to consider whether treatment could be best provided at hospital, or in the community or at home.
“It is important that people and carers recognise that healthcare delivered at home can be a safer alternative.”
A rapid access care unit, which is due to open in October, was installed at Townlands to replace 14 beds at the old Peppard Ward. It will run alongside eight beds at the neighbouring Orders of St John care home, with six more available on demand.
Mr Howell said: “I hope to work with the Royal College of Physicians in the future so that we can improve our healthcare systems and ensure that we all have access to the best possible care as I believe we do in Henley.
“I hope I have supported our local care services in Henley to work together to ensure that everyone can receive the right treatment in the right place at the right time.”