27/01/2021 | Stephen Wade MLC | Better Services | Lower Costs

Eligible South Australians can now receive hospital-level care from the comfort and privacy of their own home, with the rollout of the new My Home Hospital across metropolitan Adelaide.

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said GPs and specialists can now refer patients with specific health conditions to My Home Hospital, with five patients already having started the program.

“The Marshall Liberal Government is committed to providing more support for people to stay well and out of hospital but also get the care they need out of hospital,” Minister Wade said.

“Patients do not always have to be physically in hospital to receive the care they need. My Home Hospital gives patients the option for doctors, nurses, and allied health practitioners to deliver care right into their home.

“A key benefit of home-based care is to reduce the risk of hospital-based infection - a heightened concern as we continue to deal with the COVID pandemic.

“This innovative and patient-centred approach will not only provide care from the comfort of people’s homes but increase hospital capacity and reduce pressure on the wider health system.

“Three home hospital pilot programs in the northern, southern and central local health networks helped free up hundreds of hospital bed days by providing home or community care to hundreds of patients.

“The programs prevented many Emergency Department presentations and hospital admissions, providing much-needed relief for our busy hospital staff and busy EDs.

“For older patients, a hospital stay often worsens their overall condition. It may disrupt their routine and sleep, reduce access to family and friends, and involve prolonged bed-rest which can rapidly decrease muscle strength.

“Receiving care in a familiar and comfortable surrounding benefits a patient’s overall wellbeing and improves treatment outcomes, as well as avoiding the risk of hospital acquired infection.

“The South Australian health system is currently one of the most expensive health systems in Australia, on average operating above the National Efficient Price.

“In order to create a more sustainable health system, we need to move towards a health system that provides safe, high quality but lower cost alternatives to hospital care.

Wellbeing SA Chief Executive, Lyn Dean, said this new service – delivered in partnership with Calvary and Medibank – is available for a range of treatments where in-home care is considered appropriate.

“People who need treatment for conditions such as kidney or respiratory infections, cellulitis or deep vein thrombosis could be eligible for the program.

“During treatment, My Home Hospital doctors and nurses will visit patients in their home as required to provide the care they need in person and via video call.

“Using remote monitoring technology, doctors and nurses will also be able to stay in touch with patients at any time and track clinical observations such as blood pressure, pulse and temperature in real time.”

Services such as some x-rays, blood tests, medication and other support services such as meals and personal care if needed can also be provided through My Home Hospital.

This free service will be available for eligible public patients across metropolitan Adelaide, with the My Home Hospital care team available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

To find out more about My Home Hospital, visit myhomehospital.sa.gov.au.