Delayed Discharge Figures Soar by Over 20% in Dumfries & Galloway, Prompting MSP Concern

Monthly delayed discharge figures continue to show large numbers of people in Dumfries and Galloway waiting in hospital

Figures released by Public Health Scotland on Tuesday show delayed discharge continues to be a concern in the Dumfries and Galloway.

When comparing July 2022 with July 2023, the figures in the region rose by 21 per cent and are a massive 88 per cent higher than pre-pandemic (July 2019).

Delayed discharge is when a patient is medically cleared to go home but cannot leave hospital, often because a social care package is not in place or there is a lack of places in care homes or sheltered housing.

Across the region thousands of hours of assessed care is not being provided in homes because of a lack of carers.

Colin Smyth MSP said: “Month after month we continue to see how much of an issue delayed discharge is in Dumfries and Galloway, with figures rising by over 20 per cent compared to 2022. And these are not just statistics: we all know someone personally who has been affected by this.

“This problem is not unique to our region, people across the whole of Scotland are suffering and while our amazing local NHS are working as hard as they can to get people out of hospital, they can’t work miracles.

“When you look at the 2019 figures, it really puts things into perspective – in 2023 we have thousands more people languishing in hospital without an appropriate care package in place to get them home or into care homes or sheltered housing.

“Delayed discharge must be eradicated as soon as possible.

“We need long term investment, including tackling the woeful low level of sheltered housing locally, but the Government could start by backing Labour’s plans to not only pay care workers a fair wage of £12 an hour immediately, but rising to £15 which would help with the recruitment crisis.”

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