News Story

Delayed discharge continues to strain NHS

January 12, 2017

Delayed discharge figures, published today by NHS England, continue to demonstrate the increasing impact of social care underfunding.

Vicky McDermott, Chair of the Care and Support Alliance said:

“These figures give us an indication of the state of the NHS itself and clearly it’s in a critical condition, with today’s numbers being the highest recorded in the month of November since records began (1).

“The Government needs to find a cure to the unnecessary pressure social care is placing on our overstretched NHS.

“Social care is driving people to hospitals and GPs, as they have nowhere else to turn. People who need care at home for basics like eating, washing and getting out of bed are falling into crisis, needing hospital care and then because of the lack of social care, aren’t able to leave hospital.

“This social care crisis, needs immediate attention, the Government haven’t adequately filled the widening financial hole in social care budgets and so social care demands will continue to overwhelm the NHS. Last year alone saw the NHS losing 650,000 bed days (2), costing up to £300 million (3) a number that will inevitably rise as we get deeper into winter.”

“The Government must not dismiss the growing calls for greater investment into social care, otherwise, more and more people who could receive the care they need at home will be trapped in NHS wards.”

1 ) November delayed discharge figures:

2 ) Delayed Transfers of Care Data 2016-17

3 ) Operational productivity and performance in English NHS acute hospitals: Unwarranted variations. An independent report for the Department of Health by Lord Carter of Coles. 

The Care and Support Alliance represents more than 90 of Britain’s leading charities campaigning alongside the millions of older people, disabled people and their carers who deserve decent care.