David Oliver: Discharging patients from overcrowded hospitals—fewer “progress chasers” and more “doers” please
7 Jan, 15 | by BMJ
This year, urgent activity in English NHS hospitals has reportedly hit a record high. Officially reported “delayed transfers of care” (inpatients medically fit to leave, but awaiting community health and care services) have also peaked. These figures routinely underestimate the real number of people in beds whose needs no longer require the full facilities of the general hospital.
Hospitals are routinely declaring “Red” and “Black” status alerts and their executives are coming under increasing pressure from politicians, regulators, and NHS England over declining performance against the four hour standard for emergency department assessment and treatment (a target almost unique to the NHS). Emergency readmissions to hospital within 30 days are running at around 15% for patients aged 65 or over. more…