Recovering British hospital patients to be put up by locals in new pilot

AirBnb-style accommodation trialled for hospital patients in UK


Recuperating British hospital patients will be put up in Airbnb-style accommodation as part of a small new pilot scheme.

A trial will see around 30 patients waiting for discharge from hospital care staying with local residents who have a spare room or annex.

CareRooms is recruiting “hosts” — who do not need any previous care experience — in Essex who could earn up to £50 a night putting up people recuperating from a hospital stay.

The company said it will transform spare rooms and annexes with a private bathroom into “secure care spaces for patients who are waiting to be discharged”.

Prospective hosts, who can earn up to a maximum of £1,000 a month, need to go through security checks before they are approved for the scheme.

They are required to heat up three microwave meals each day and supply drinks and are offered “host protection” as well as a helpline and training.

The company’s website said it aims to “provide patients with a practical alternative to hospitals and care homes to recuperate in”.

It adds: “Our hospitals are becoming increasingly full with patients who have nowhere to go, your spare room and bathroom can be safely converted to allow patients to be discharged for a maximum of two weeks, for remote carers to look after them and for minimal impact and risk to your daily life.”

CareRooms said the “micro pilot” would involve just five to 10 hosts over a three-month period. The trial will not start until all parties are assured that the process is “safe or safer than standard practice”, it said.

The scheme was helped by NHS England’s Clinical Entrepreneur programme which helps frontline doctors realise ideas and develop their entrepreneurial aspirations.

An NHS England spokesman said: “While it’s good to hear innovative ideas from NHS staff, this suggestion from an A&E doctor in Southend is a long way from being implemented and would first need to be very carefully assessed and tested.” - PA