Sussex Community NHS Trust, which runs some services at Horsham Hospital, prevented 40 to 48 admissions to hospital wards every week this year as a result of improving care in the community.
The figures were revealed at a Horsham District Council meeting of the Health Provision Working Group on Tuesday April 30.
Councillors are trying to ascertain what the future of services at Horsham might look like and this week Sarah Eggleton, head of adult services (north) and Evelyn Prodger, matron on the Horizon unit at Horsham Hospital joined them to explain how they work to prevent admissions.
Mrs Eggleton said the Horsham and Mid Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has indicated it supports more care in the community.
“We are in a good position with our CCG and are working very closely. They like the scheduled work and have high regard for our bedded unit and management of long term care in the community. They are extremely keen to continue to invest in this area,” she said.
Ms Prodger said: “We are not an acute hospital, so (when we admit someone) we need to be able to meet their needs. Horizon is one of the units which takes people from all three acute units. We prioritise community admissions over transfers from acute hospitals.
“But they have to be suitable to be helped by a nurse led service. It’s assessing their needs and where those needs would be best met.”
Working group chairman David Skipp (LDem, Roffey north) asked about the possibility of more beds.
But Ms Eggleton said: “There will always be a need for bedded care, but we need to be doing more in people’s homes and in nursing home and increasing community provision.
“It’s not just about cost, but quality of life and outcomes.”