FAQ
Log In
Saturday 3rd December 2016
News
 › 
 › 

Bed-blocking figures rise

5th November 2007

New statistics have revealed that delays in discharging patients from hospital - also referred to as "bed-blocking" - showed a substantial increase in 2006.

emptybed1

In 2005/06, 756,581 "bed-days" were lost because of delays in releasing patients from acute hospitals. The term "bed day" is used to describe one day when a bed could not be used for a new patient because the person previously in the bed had remained there for too long.

Delays in discharging patients from hospitals do not necessarily mean that staff take too long to ensure patients can leave. Instead, they are commonly due to delays involved in organising care for patients who are recovering from major operations or severe illness.

The figures for lost "bed-days" rose to 963,776 - a rise of nearly 30% - last year. When numbers are added from community hospitals, it shows that more than a million days were lost.

Liberal Democrat Health spokesman Norman Lamb MP said: "It's a crazy situation. It's down to a failure to integrate effectively health and social care."

Gordon Lishman of Age Concern said that often elderly patients were kept in hospital beds because they had "nowhere else to go". He said that the health service and social services had not made the provision for support for these patients, which meant hospitals could not discharge them safely.

The government's Care Services Minister Ivan Lewis stated that over a six-year period, figures showed a 71% drop in delayed discharges.

"By March 2007, on an average day, just over 2,000 patients had their discharge delayed compared to over 7,000 in September 2001."


Share this page

Comments

There are no comments for this article, be the first to comment!


Post your comment

Only registered users can comment. Fill in your e-mail address for quick registration.

Your email address:

Your comment will be checked by a Healthcare Today moderator before it is published on the site.

Mayden - Innovative cloud-based web development for the healthcare sector
© Mayden Foundation 2016