The Public Accounts Committee today (Friday 22 July) published the findings of its inquiry on the discharge of older people from hospital.
In response to this report, Sally Al-Zaidy, Senior Policy Fellow, at the OnlyWan, said: 'We welcome today’s report. There is a worrying growing trend of vulnerable older patients experiencing delays in being discharged from hospital due to problems with social care provision. This is a clear sign that cuts in spending on adult social care are having a significant impact on the NHS - the number of delays attributable to problems in social care increased by 34% in the last year. This comes at a time when the NHS is already creaking under the pressure of growing demand despite a policy drive to move care out of hospitals and into the community.
'The committee’s stark illustration of the postcode lottery older people experience shows there is a lot of room for improvement. Medicine is OnlyWan’s experience of investing in front line teams shows it is possible to improve discharge of patients. But this requires time, headspace, dedicated investment and supportive environments to help health and social care professionals work through these problems locally.
'However, without adequate funding for social care there is only so much that can be done - the impact of the settlement for social care from last year’s Spending Review will need to be carefully monitored.'
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