Community Hospitals Are FAB

Community Hospitals Association

The Community Hospitals Association (CHA) was established in 1969 and is a unique voice for community hospitals - their services, staff, patients and communities. The CHA is a membership organisation which supports community hospitals in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. We are dedicated to sharing knowledge and experience on the role, function and potential of community hospitals. We also share information throughout our networks on the contribution that community hospital services make to the health and wellbeing of patients and communities.

Roy Lilley is the Director of NHS Fab Stuff and we are delighted that he is also the Patron of the CHA. We share the ambition of promoting good practice with the Academy of NHS Fab Stuff and are very pleased to be working together.

The CHA actively encourages research and evaluation in community hospitals in order to inform practice and improve patient care.

  • Applying knowledge from research
  • Transferring learning from good practice
  • Informing planning for appropriate services
  • Sharing ways in which communities support their community hospital
  • Securing excellence in patient care
  • Bringing new knowledge, information, evidence, updates and resources on community hospitals.

Community Hospitals (CH) made important contributions during the Covid-19 response, demonstrating flexibility, resilience and innovation. CH are local hospitals, often rural, and there are around 500 throughout the UK. 3 examples of quality improvement and innovation have been shared on the Community Hospitals Association (CHA) website:

*Improved communication between patients, families and staff via new technology to encourage motivation and progress rehabilitation

*Improved skills and confidence through locally designed, rapid, virtual training for redeployed staff optimising flexibility and care

*Optimised use of therapy time through implementing home assessments remotely

Also it’s the 50th Anniversary of the CHA this year and we would welcome all those who are interested in community hospitals to join in our celebrations and join the Association. This year we have decided to have free personal LIFETIME membership currently reflecting our 50thAnniversary year via the web link

Community Hospitals: Embedding Covid-19 positive impact changes through shared learning’

The Community Hospital Association was successful in its application in October 2020, to the Health Foundation Q Exchange for project funding to capture the contribution of community hospitals during COVID-19 from the staff themselves. 

During 2021, 85 staff from 20 organisations providing community hospitals were interviewed about their work, in 30 interviews. Contextually there are approximately 500 CHs and 117 providers of CHs across the UK, so positively the project has connected with 33% of CHs.  

The enthusiasm of community hospital staff and their organisations to participate has been remarkable given the service pressures, reinforcing the initial suggestion that CHs are often fragmented and do not have the opportunity to share their learning with other community hospitals.

The thematic analysis of all interviews was completed in November 2021, which then led to the selection of 11 full case studies and 22 short case studies. Will be showcasing and shring these case studies over the next 4 months - so watch this space!

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