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Hospital needs patient discharge support volunteer

Hospital needs patient discharge support volunteer

by Tom Martin (January 2021)

Southport and Ormskirk hospitals are looking to recruit a local person to fill a unique and fulfilling position as a patient discharge support volunteer.

Volunteer manager Irene Gardner explains: “It is widely recognised that volunteers play a vital role in supporting their local community hospitals.  The service that they provide benefits not only themselves and the patients, but also staff members, who feel supported by and connected to the community.

“The role of discharge support volunteer provides practical, emotional and social support to patients prior to discharge and once back home. This support is open to patients who are aged 70 or over and who may be worried about how they will cope when they return home. The aim of the role is to help reduce the fear and anxiety that vulnerable patients may experience upon leaving hospital.”

The volunteer will play a vital part in providing comfort and reassurance, will help the patient to rebuild confidence and connect with support services, and ultimately provide a friendly ear to someone at a time when they are feeling vulnerable.

What does the role include?

Checklists of patients’ needsCompanionshipDining companionHelp with packingEnsuring transport home is arrangedAccompanying patients to their vehicleTelephone patients who have taken up the telephone support option, a few days following discharge, then at an agreed time on a weekly basis  for up to 6 weeksProvide information, signpost and refer to community, voluntary and other support services if required and monitor these referralsUpdate paperwork and monitoring systemsSupport and communicate with other Discharge Support Volunteers

What experience do I need?

Aged 17 or overGood communication skillsWarm and friendly mannerAbility to work in a teamAbility to follow instructionAbility to empathise and show compassionTo complete any specialist training which is relevant to roleCommitment to uphold Trust core values and NHS policies

If you would like to talk about the role or to apply, please email volunteer manager irenegardner@nhs.net

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