Criteria-led discharge


We’re supporting NHS providers to improve patient experience and operational performance, by using criteria-led discharge.

Over the years the concept of criteria-led discharge or nurse led discharge has been introduced with varying degrees of success. It means we can tackle delays in discharge effectively and offer the patient a better discharge pathway and experience.

Aims of the programme

Our aim is to support providers to:

  • improve the experience and quality of care received by patients
  • learn about quality improvement tools and techniques and put those into practice
  • share best practice 
  • increase criteria-led discharge within their organisation

Our support offer

We're supporting trusts taking part in the collaborative to adopt improvement methodologies and creating a learning community for them to discuss the changes they're implementing and share their findings. We'll share the learnings and resources from our collaborative here. 

Social media users can join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #Improvedischarge

How can we support you?

We’d really like to hear how you think we can support you to increase nurse/criteria-led discharge. 

You can still be involved even if your trust isn’t a member of the collaborative via our resources.  Please tell us what challenges you’re facing via our discussion. We’ll use the information that you share with us to develop our next steps.

Is criteria-led discharge safe?

Criteria-led discharge should be considered as one of the improvement initiatives that contribute to releasing capacity through more streamlined patient discharge. A reasonable question to ask before actively pursuing criteria-led discharge, is ‘is it safe?’

In order to answer this question, a systematic review was undertaken and published in the Journal of Nursing Care Quality. The research included in the systematic review identifies the benefits of criteria-led discharge for patients, staff and for patient flow. It also discusses the facilitators for criteria-led discharge.

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