Wandsworth top of the league for reducing hospital bed blocking cases


8,000 more beds were available in Wandsworth compared to the worst performing borough.


By SWLondoner staff

Wandsworth is the best performing of all London boroughs in reducing hospital bed blocking cases, according to new government figures.

The adult social services department has been ranked top of all the 33 boroughs in London for ensuring that patients, most of whom are elderly, can return from hospital without suffering unnecessary delays.

Bed blocking, or delayed transfer of care (DTOC) as it is officially known, occurs when patients cannot be discharged from hospital because they do not have appropriate support systems in place to care for them when they are at home.

Hold-ups can occur if home carers or other community services have not been arranged to provide suitable after care, if adaptations to their homes have not been completed or, if required, that a suitable residential or nursing home has not been found.

Government figures show that Wandsworth achieved a score of 0.56 delays per 100,000 residents, with the average for the capital 2.67 and the worst performing borough reaching a score of 7.69.

In real terms this meant 8,000 more beds were available to the NHS for Wandsworth residents last year compared with the worst performing borough.

“These are excellent figures and a real testament to the hard work and dedication of social workers and hospital staff who have demonstrated the vital importance of good communications,” said Cabinet member for adult social services Cllr Jim Maddan.

“Ensuring that people can return home to recuperate as soon as they are ready can have a hugely beneficial effect on their recovery, while ensuring that acute hospital beds can be speedily brought back into use for other patients is extremely important for the NHS and means that nursing and medical resources can be directed where they are needed most.

“Having witnessed these successes over the past 12 months, it is important that we do not rest on our laurels. We must continue to focus on strong working relationships with NHS clinical staff, develop even better integrated working and continue to make sure that patients get the best possible service.”

 Photo courtesy of alex@faraway, with thanks.

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