Plans to cut delayed discharge in Scotland

The Scottish government has announced plans to reduce delayed discharge.

Patients who do not need to remain in hospital will be reassessed as soon as possible so they get the right care, in the right place, at the right time.

Each health board area is to identify patients who are clinically safe to be discharged and who can safely move home or to another setting like an interim placement in a care home.

Patients are only to be discharged if deemed safe and clinical risk assessments will take into account the capacity of social care and social work and the potential impact on families or carers of patients.

Last week the Scottish Government announced £8 million of funding for an extra 300 interim care beds.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “First and foremost, we know hospital is not a good place to be for people who are medically fit to leave, because it can lead to them becoming weaker or less independent. That’s why it’s so important they can move home, or to a homely setting, as soon as possible.

“We believe this will also help to alleviate pressure on our NHS by freeing up beds and improving the flow of patients through hospitals. It is also, crucially, in the best interest of the people concerned.

“If we can reduce delayed discharge there is more chance that beds will be available for people who need them. We hope that these reviews will also contribute to reducing some of the pressures our hospitals are facing.”

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