Significant NHS delayed transfers drop

9 Aug 18

There has been a significant fall in the number of NHS transfers delayed because of social care problems, statistics have revealed.

The latest NHS England update, published today but relating to June, showed there were 134,300 total delayed days in the month of which 88,800 were in acute care.

Of the delayed days, 62.6% were attributable to the NHS, 29.9% to social care, with the remaining 7.4% caused by both systems.

Compared with figures for June 2017, there had been a 40% fall in the number of delays caused by social care issues.

Julie Ogley, vice president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, said: “Despite significant pressures, our dedicated social care workforce has once again made an incredible impact, keeping delays to transfers of care lower than at this point last year.

“However, the pressures facing our care and health services, compounded by a lack of certainty around the long-term funding for social care, are increasing, and there is only so much that dedication can do.”

Izzi Seccombe, chair of the Local Government Association’s community wellbeing board, said adult social care needed to be put on an “equal footing” with the health service.

“Councils need urgent funding to invest in effective prevention work to reduce the need for people to be admitted to hospital in the first place,” she said.

A delayed transfer of care occurs when a patient is medically fit for discharge from acute or non-acute care but is still occupying a bed.

The LGA recently launched its own green paper on the future funding of social care suggesting that middle-aged and older people be required to pay more in tax.

 

 

  • Vivienne Russell

    Vivienne Russell is managing editor of Public Finance magazine and publicfinance.co.uk

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