Province announces program bringing hospital-level care at home

The province has expanded a program to Vancouver, that allows eligible patients to get acute-level care in their homes.

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health announced on Thursday, that the Hospital at Home (HaH) program is available in several hospitals in Vancouver for patients to benefit from convenient, safe, and timely hospital-level care.

The program was launched in Vancouver last month.

Dix says, HaH is an internationally recognized model that has been successful in the United Kingdom and Australia, which aims to improve patient comfort and independence.

“Giving patients the option to receive safe and individualized care in their own homes not only helps with the recovery of the patient, but it also benefits the healthcare system,” he said.

“They have access to care 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Dix says, that if a patient’s condition worsens, they have the option to return to the hospital.

He says, the team works to tailor care to the patient’s individual needs, and virtual visits are also offered. Patients are also monitored remotely for their vital signs.

Dix says, this program was piloted in the Island Health’s hospitals in 2020 and showed remarkable success, which inspired the expansion to Vancouver.

“As our government is committed to strengthening people’s access to high-quality health services, the launch of this program in the Lower Mainland will help improve care at Vancouver hospitals,” he said.

The hospitals included in this program are Vancouver General Hospital (VGH), UBC Hospital (UBCH), St. Paul’s Hospital (SPH), and Mount Saint Joseph Hospital (MSJH) for those who have a diagnosis such as sepsis, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or dehydration, among others.

“Specific healthcare services include medication management, lab diagnostics, oxygen IV therapy, in tube feeding,” Dix said.

The program teams include doctors, registered nurses, pharmacists, occupational and physiotherapists, speech-language pathologists, and more.

The province says, other specialists may also be provided based on individual patient needs.

HaH Medical Lead at VGH, Iain McCormick says, patients tell him, getting to recover in their homes is the biggest benefit of this program.

“Patients have a lot of support wrapped around them, including daily in-person visits and a mix of virtual and monitoring technologies,” he said.

Dix said an evaluation of the treatment after one year at Island Health showed 99 per cent of patients would recommend HaH to family and friends, and 98 per cent of caregivers felt confident.

“That’s why we are expanding it here in Vancouver,” Dix said.

The province says, since March 2024, HaH has supported 18 patients at a time in Vancouver.

Dix says, patients had improved comfort, caregivers had improved satisfaction and involvement, and the program decreased the risk of hospital-acquired delirium, infections, and mortality.

Greta Jefferson, a clinical nurse specialist at VGH says, she is happy to see this program come to life.

“We have consistently heard from patients enrolled in the program how much they enjoy receiving care in their homes,” she said.

“They say they eat well, sleep well, and feel secure knowing that they can connect with a care team member 24/7.”

She says hospital support staff visit patients daily.

“So much of who we are is made up of that connection between the body mind and spirit, and we’ve heard that being able to be in your own home can offer a better environment for some patients to relax and recover,” she said.

“I look forward to seeing this program help patients in the months and weeks ahead.”

Top Stories

Top Stories

Most Watched Today