Rapid Response Team

The Rapid Response Team (RRT) is one of the Primary Care Interface Services and is based at the Whittington Hospital.

The service operates predominantly within the emergency department and medical assessment unit and is staffed by an inter-professional team, where joint working is necessary to acheive safe client centred outcomes.  The team consists of two OTs, two social workers and OT technician support.

The aim of the team is to prevent unnecessary hospital admission by providing holistic assessment and appropriate support to clients to acheive a safe community discharge.

The team undertakes functional assessments, provides adaptive equipment/walking aids where appropriate, and refers to home care agencies if needed.  The team has strong links with community resources and can refer clients to rehabilitation schemes if required.  The team also works collaboratively with the medical and nursing teams to decide whether discharge is possible, particularly with regard to older vulnerable adults.

Service Hours


The Service is accessible Monday to Friday, from 9am to 5pm.  (There is no service at the weekend).

All patients requiring care packages need to be referred by 4pm, to allow enough time to set this up.

Scope of Rapid Response Team Practice


The team works collaboratively with the medical and nursing teams to assist with the decision making process for discharge planning and decides if an immediate and safe discharge is possible, and whether the discharge needs supporting.

The team supports discharge in the following ways:
  • Refer for immediate Home Care Support Packages (e.g. for new clients living in Islington, Camden and Haringey the team can set up 3x daily care plus meals on wheels but are unlikely to be able to arrange immediate care for Hackney, Barnet or Enfield clients).
  • Liaise with the clientís family, care provider, and community services including Community Rehabilitation Teams and Social Service Departments to arrange appropriate packages of care.
  • Provide adaptive OT equipment to maximise function (e.g. toilet frames, secure loose carpets, fit rails, raise chairs).
  • Undertaking follow-up Occupational Therapy (OT) Home Visits to continue the risk assessment process within the home.
  • Refer clients to Dorothy Warren Day Hospital, particularly if they are regular fallers.
If a more complex review of the clientís needs is required, or there are safety issues, the team will recommend that the patient is not suitable for discharge.  This decision is communicated to the referring Doctor.

If the patient is transferred to MAU the team will provide follow-up OT and SW support communicating with and referring to colleagues as necessary.