Concerns over NHS Tayside delayed bed discharges

Murdo Fraser MSP has said he feels Tayside patients are getting a “raw deal” after statistics showed that the area had the highest proportion of delayed bed discharges in Scotland in the 2017-18 financial year for mental health patients.

Figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives from ISD (Information Services Division) Scotland reveal that NHS Tayside had the unenviable distinction of topping the table of delayed bed delays for mental health patients during this period (43%).

And Perth and Kinross had the fifth worst record for delayed discharge bed delays (41%) attributed to mental health specialities for 2017-18.

In the report, which provides statistics from April 2017 to March 2018, and is entitled ‘Annual summary of occupied bed days and census figures,’ it states that there was a total of 494,123 bed days occupied by people who had been delayed in discharging themselves from beds in Scottish hospitals during 2017-18.

Of these, 69% were occupied by patients aged 75 years and over. The reasons for delay were: 34% - awaiting completion of care arrangements; 26% - awaiting place availability; 21% - due to complex delays; 15% - awaiting community care assessment and 4% - other reasons.

The average number of delayed discharge beds occupied per day in 2017-18 in Scotland was 1,354.

Mr Fraser, the Scottish Conservative MSP for the Mid Scotland and Fife region, slammed the figures which showed NHS Tayside had the worst record for delayed bed discharges for mental health patients in Scotland during 2017-18.

“These figures are awful and just emphasise how Tayside patients are getting a raw deal from the local health authority,” he said.

“The health service is facing a number of challenges and delayed bed discharges is one of them. The problem of bed shortages is being made worse by delayed discharges and these figures highlight a worrying situation in Perth and Kinross in particular.”

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