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Delayed transfer of care days rise

Statistics reveal an increase month on month in the number of delayed transfer of care days

Published on 30th July 2019

Delayed transfer of care days rose in May to the highest levels since October last year, official statistics have revealed.

The figures, published by NHS England, revealed that there were 139,500 total delayed days in May 2019 and 4,499 average number of patients delayed per day. This compared to 130,842 total delayed days in the previous month of April 2019 and 4,361 average number of patients delayed per day.

Julie Ogley, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, said: “This rise in delayed transfers of care attributable to social care is unfortunately a consequence of our persistent warnings about the vital need for investment in social care, primary and community services and the need to focus more on supporting people at home."

However, while there were 139,500 total delayed days in May 2019, of which 91,600 were in acute care, this is a decrease from May 2018, where there were 139,800 total delayed days, of which 92,300 were in acute care.

Both the NHS and the social care sectors have seen a decrease in the volume of delayed transfers of care in the last year. While 62.3% of all delays in May 2019 were attributable to the NHS, 28.1% were attributable to social care and the remaining 9.6% were attributable to both NHS and social care.

The main reason for NHS delays in May 2019 was “Patients Awaiting further Non Acute NHS Care”. This accounted for 26,300 delayed days or 30.3% of all NHS delays. The main reason for social care delays in May 2019 was “Patients Awaiting Care Package in their Own Home”. This accounted for 12,400 delayed days and 31.5% of all social care delays.

Julie Ogley added: “Investment in home care and other social care services is the best way to improve overall performance and most importantly benefit people’s lives, while hospitals are continuing to struggle due to increasing numbers of patients arriving and staying longer.

“We need the NHS Long-Term Plan to bring forward investment in GPs and district nurses, to help relieve the demand placed on hospital urgent care services from people needlessly staying in hospital for longer than necessary due to a lack of care support at home," she concluded.

 

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