Health staff are working with colleagues in social care and the voluntary sector to tackle the problem of delayed discharges
From the minute a patient comes through the door – be that via A&E or one of our admission wards – we’re starting to think about how we can get [them] home,” says Rachel Blackmore, an operational manager at University hospital of North Tees in the north-east of England.
Delayed discharge from hospital is a widespread issue for the health service. Latest NHS England data reveals there were 145,000 delayed discharge days in April.
Pressure on the NHS is also leading to some patients being discharged before they are ready and without the right care and checks in place, a British Red Cross Report warned in February. It said frail and vulnerable patients were becoming trapped in a cycle of avoidable hospital readmissions.