Hospital to home – transitioning to the right accommodation

Posted 1 year ago by Liz Alderslade
Many people with disability end up staying in hospital for longer than necessary because they can’t find appropriate accommodation to move into after a hospital stay. [Source: Supplied]
Many people with disability end up staying in hospital for longer than necessary because they can’t find appropriate accommodation to move into after a hospital stay. [Source: Supplied]

SPONSORED – Across the country, people with disability are finding themselves unable to find suitable accommodation and supports after a hospital stay, which is extending their stay even longer and impacting their quality of life and costing tens of millions of dollars.

In Victoria, in particular, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), Bill Shorten, said patients with disability were waiting an average of 160 days, or five months, to leave hospital, costing at least $2,300 a day.

With ongoing reports of people with disability who are medically fit to leave public hospital beds but unable to, disability service provider CareChoice is achieving great success in helping people with disability to exit hospital settings quickly and transition them into appropriate accommodation and supports.

Since early in the pandemic, CareChoice wanted to create a solution for this problem and worked closely with hospitals, families and discharge professionals to find alternative accommodation for patients.

CareChoice’s Rapid Hospital Discharge Program (RHDP) helps patients with a disability who are clinically ready for discharge from hospital to transition into Medium Term Accommodation, which is funded by the NDIS.

Within this accommodation setting, CareChoice is able to provide 24-hour support to suit the person’s individual needs.

While providing this round-the-clock support and continuity of care, the CareChoice team works on finding a long-term accommodation solution or ‘forever home’.

Megan*, a wheelchair user, was living in a Melbourne hospital for two years due to no housing being available that had suitable equipment for her needs.

With assistance from CareChoice, Megan was able to move into a brand-new Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) property in Melbourne’s northern suburbs.

“I couldn’t live in this house without them, they help me with everything in my life,” says Megan.

“I wouldn’t have the life I have now without the CareChoice family involved.”

The three-bedroom home was designed for high physical support needs and includes onsite overnight accommodation for a support worker.

Megan’s bedroom features an overhead hoist, which enables her to get out of bed and into her wheelchair every day. She is now able to have pets and enjoys playing with her dog and galah.

Megan also receives Supported Independent Living supports from a dedicated team of CareChoice support workers. They assist her with getting out of bed and into her wheelchair, personal care, preparing meals, medication administration, implementing allied health programs, walking her dog, and playing games.

Michael* had been living in aged care since he was in his thirties due to a rare form of epilepsy (MERRF Syndrome) and an acquired brain injury.

During the pandemic, CareChoice assisted Michael to exit aged care and move into a SDA property in Melbourne’s western suburbs.

With the help of his support workers, Michael is getting the most out of life again. He now enjoys regular trips to the cinema, shopping centres, game centres and the zoo.

“They support me in maintaining a social life by going out to participate in some activities and going for a daily walk,” says Michael.

A heavy smoker who used to smoke 50 cigarettes a day, Michael went cold turkey eight months ago and has not had a cigarette since. He recently applied for a passport and is planning an overseas trip.

For more information about the Rapid Hospital Discharge program, visit the CareChoice website.

*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the clients.

About CareChoice

CareChoice is an NDIS-registered service provider specialising in complex support and 24-hour programs. Specialist services include:

  • Supported Independent Living
  • CareChoice Homes – we partner with registered NDIS housing providers to offer new disability houses and support to participants with SDA funding.
  • Positive Behaviour Support
  • Support Coordination

For more information, call 1300 737 942 or email [email protected].