§ Mr. Ashley
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measures he is taking to ensure that people with progressive disabilities are not discharged from acute hospital beds without appropriate community support services.
§ Mr. Mellor
[holding answer 1 March 1989]: A circular "Discharge of Patients from Hospital" is being issued to health and local authorities this week. Health authorities are asked to ensure that patients are not discharged until appropriate arrangements for after-care have been made with social services departments, primary health care teams and others. Health notice/local authority social services letter, HN(88)26/LASSL(88)8 which was issued by the Department last November also emphasised the need for co-operation between the relevant agencies to ensure that services for people with disabilities were planned before discharge.