Hospital in the Home
Hospital in the Home (HITH) is the provision of acute care to public hospital patients in the comfort of the person's own home or other suitable environment.
Patients are regarded as hospital inpatients, and remain under the care of their hospital doctor. Care may be provided by a nurse, doctor and/or allied health professional. Additional home supports can be arranged as required.
HITH is an alternative to an inpatient stay. Patients can be offered this option by treating staff if the care type can be delivered safely at home.
Most patients prefer to be treated in their home, with their family or friends around them. They can resume normal activities and routines quickly. Research findings demonstrate that patients have improved outcomes and recovery at home with fewer complications such as infection, delirium and confusion.
Participation in HITH is voluntary – patients and their carers must agree to have their care provided at home.
Who can access
Any patient of a public hospital:
- assessed as being clinically stable
- appropriately supported in the home, for example a carer or other supports
- living in a suitable environment, with access to a telephone
- suitable for HITH treatment
- willing to be treated by HITH
can access HITH assistance.
Who can refer
Referral is generally made by a hospital doctor or nurse, however, some programs have affiliated general practitioners who can refer.
Patients may be admitted to HITH in different ways, depending on their condition and treatment. Some patients may be directly admitted from the Emergency Department or the community, or may have a stay in hospital first, and can then be transferred into HITH to continue their treatment (for example after surgery or after their condition has stabilised).
HITH programs across Victoria
There are 52 HITH sites across Victoria.
There is no charge to patients for the HITH program.