Delayed discharge figures show progress

The number of delayed discharges have decreased in Scotland in
spite of the pressures on hospital and community resources over the
winter, according to the latest figures from the Scottish

The trend is identified in the latest report, Patients Ready for
Discharge, published by the Information and Statistics Division of
the Scottish executive. Between September 2000 and January 2001,
there has been a 5.9 per cent drop in the number of patients
waiting for discharge, and a decrease of 10 days in the median time
patients wait for discharge from hospital.

Susan Deacon, health minister, said: “It is particularly
impressive that staff in our local authorities and health boards
have achieved this improvement over the winter period when extra
pressures usually mean increasing numbers of patients are

The executive gave £34 million of extra resources to health
and social work agencies to tackle delayed discharge, which has
seen improvement in 66 per cent of health board areas. Deacon
attributed the progress to “more effective joint working between
local authorities and health boards”.

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