Reducing long stays in hospitals: how to prepare properly for winter and learn from past pressures

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With the pressures on the NHS making news headlines every winter, it is time to engage in serious preparation work to ensure that hospital corridors will not serve as impromptu wards this winter. Run in partnership with the British Red Cross, this event will highlight ways in which the health and social care system can come together to ensure that every patient receives the right care for them.  

Learn about practical solutions and hear about new developments from:

  • expert consultants from The King’s Fund who help NHS trusts to develop their skills in relationship-building
  • NHS Improvement’s plans to transform patient flow with new policy interventions 
  • the Care Quality Commission and the findings from their local systems reviews, to learn which measures work in practice and what mistakes can be avoided
  • mental health professionals, who explain why some complaints seem somatic but are often not and why A&E is not the appropriate place for treatment
  • the role of technology in providing innovative solutions to designing the patient journey
  • the practical solutions implemented by the British Red Cross that prevent hospital re-admission with minimal spending 
  • the National Housing Federation’s discussion on the role of housing in facilitating discharge and linking hospitals with the delivery of social care.

Event partner



Engage with leaders and decision-makers from across health and social care by sponsoring or exhibiting at our conferences

Are you interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at this event? Email Danielle Roche or call her on 020 7307 2482 to discuss the opportunities available. 


Event sponsor


Group rates
10 per cent discount for 3-4 people
15 per cent discount for 5-6 people
20 per cent discount for 7 or more people. 
Please email Annie for your promotional code. The discount will not be automatically applied to your booking. 

Receive 50 per cent off if you're a student in full-time education. Please email Annie for your promotional code. 

Bursaries for patients and carers 
We offer a limited number of bursary (free) places for our conferences. These are reserved for patients and carers. To apply for a bursary for this event, please email Annie.



Registration opens, refreshments and networking


Session one: How to learn from past mistakes to improve patient flow

10.00amWelcome and introduction

Matthew Lewis, Visiting Fellow, Health Policy, The King’s Fund

10.05amReducing long hospital stays: the new NHS Improvement strategy

Martin Wilson, Director of Emergency and Elective Care Strategy, NHS Improvement

10.20amThe key findings from the Care Quality Commission local system reviews: the effectiveness of local health and social care systems for older people

Alison Holbourn, Deputy Chief Inspector, Care Quality Commission

10.40amThe art of working together in partnerships: learnings from The King’s Fund's Leadership and Organisational Development consulting service

Dr Durka Dougall, Senior Consultant, Leadership and Organisational Development Team, The King’s Fund


Breakout A: Practical solutions at a minimal cost - how the British Red Cross transforms hospital discharge

12.00pmWelcome and introduction

12.05pmHow the British Red Cross is reducing delayed transfers of care, unnecessary admissions, and unplanned readmissions

  • Hear from a British Red Cross volunteer and NHS staff on the practical benefits of the British Red Cross enhanced winter pressures discharge service delivered in 2017/18.

Speakers to be announced soon

Breakout B: Mental health provisions that unblock A&E departments

12.00pmWelcome and introduction

12.05pmDepression, anxiety and mental disturbances in older people: why A&E is the least appropriate place

Professor George Tadros, Clinical Lead, Rapid Assessment, Interface and Discharge (RAID) service, Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Trust
  • Hear how the multidisciplinary approach of the RAID team enables a more human and effective treatment of frail patients.

12.25pmThe liaison psychiatrist: how to integrate mental and physical health in the hospital setting

Dr Cathy Walsh, Consultant Liaison Psychiatrist, Cambridge University Hospital Trust
  • Find out how the general population, especially children and young people, have their mental health needs noticed and served.

12.45pmIntroducing psychology to keep frequent returners out of A&E: how the problem is often mental and not physical

Dr Mark Griffiths, Consultant Lead Clinical Psychologist, Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Breakout C: Innovative technological solutions

12.00pmWelcome and introduction

12.05pmThe pioneering use of digital platforms that enable better flow: the Milton Keynes University Hospital case study

Professor Joe Harrison, Chief Executive Officer, Milton Keynes University Hospital
  • Hear how to empower patients to manage their own health, while cutting administrative costs and improving flow. 


Breakout sessions are repeated


Closing plenary: Medically fit to leave the hospital, what next for the patient?

3.00pmWelcome and introduction

David Buck, Senior Policy Fellow, Public Health and Health Inequalities, The King's Fund

3.05pmThe impact of the British Red Cross’s enhanced winter pressures service delivered in thirteen hospitals between January and March 2018

Colin Brown, UK Director for Independent Living and Crisis Response at the British Red Cross
  • Learn about the critical role the voluntary and community sector can play in supporting NHS staff during year-round operational pressure, and the role of the voluntary and community sector in bridging the gap between health and care services.
  • Hear the operational insights from the British Red Cross’s frontline service delivery.
Keynote address

3.25pmThe role of housing in patient reablement: no place like home

In a panel discussion co-organised by the National Housing Federation, you will hear how the availability of good housing solutions enables older patients who have nowhere to go to return to the care of the community in their own homes or in a social care setting.

  • Hear from commissioners who have provided housing services to help with health integration and reduce hospital stays.
  • Learn about the interface of older age and homelessness and the effects on flow from the perspective of NHS trusts. 

Speakers to be announced soon.

4.20pmClose of conference

Register now

Can I pay by invoice? 

Yes. Please select your tickets and once you're through to the registration form, you can amend the 'payment method' from credit card to 'pay by invoice'. Please note, there is a £20 surcharge to cover the cost of processing invoices. This is in addition to the ticket price and will be added to your invoice. There is no charge for paying by debit or credit card.

Contact us

Programme enquiries
Email Eugenia Marna 

Sponsorship and exhibition enquiries
Email Danielle Roche