(c) Healthcare times
Bed-blocking is the result of delayed discharges where the patient is otherwise well-enough to be discharged but cannot be because arrangements for their continuing care or recuperation in the community, are not yet in place.
1 439 people were delayed in the year ending February 2017 while only 1 297 were delayed in the year ending February 2018. This represents a fall of 9.86%.
The fall in the actual number of days of bed-blocking was 5%, down from 40 246 in 2016/17, to 38 394, in 2017/18.
Bed-blocking remains a much more serious problem in England. According to the most recent parliamentary briefing paper:
‘In 2016/17 there were 2.3 million delayed transfer days in England, an average of around 6,200 per day. The average number of delayed days for 2016/17 was 25% higher than the previous year.’
England, as you know by now, has conveniently, ten times the population of Scotland. So, if bed-blocking was a comparable problem in Scotland, we’d have a tenth of the English figure of 2.3 million or 230 000 days of bed-blocking, but we only had 40 246 in the same year, 2016/17. Bed-blocking in England is, thus, nearly 6 times as bad or, for a ‘good’ headline, around 475% worse.
Briefing Paper: Number 7415, 20 June 2017: Delayed transfers of care in the NHS: