Local MSP Jackie Baillie has highlighted new figures which show that delayed discharge is going in the wrong direction in West Dunbartonshire.
Information released this week shows that hospital bed days associated with delayed discharge have increased by 44% in a month. Delayed discharge is when a patient is clinically ready to be released from hospital but has to be kept there because doctors are unable to find a suitable place for them to go.
Earlier this year the SNP Health Minister Shona Robison pledged to get delayed discharge down to zero by the end of the year.
“The NHS is our most important public service, but we can see that it is straining to deliver the care that people in Dumbarton and the Vale of Leven need with its current resources.
“The reality is that the SNP Government is squeezing health spending here in Scotland harder than even the Tories in England, but they have also ignored the growing crisis in social care in Scotland.
“Shona Robison promised that by the end of the year no patient would be kept in a hospital when clinically fit to leave, yet the figures are going in the wrong direction, it’s getting worse, not better. Despite progress made earlier in the year, the number of patients in West Dunbartonshire kept needlessly in hospitals when they could have been in their homes with their loved ones has shot up by 44% in one month.
“The SNP Health Minister blamed last winter’s A&E crisis that kept patients waiting on trolleys for hours at the RAH on levels of delayed discharge. This issue has to be sorted before the cold weather returns.”