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Delayed Discharges

Volume 300: debated on Wednesday 12 November 1997

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will list by National Health Service trust in (a) Cornwall and (b) Devon the number of delayed discharges in each year since 1992 for which figures are available; [15385](2) what was the average number of delayed discharges in English National Health Service trusts in each year since 1992 for which figures are available. [15386]

Information on delayed discharge is collected by the Department of Health on a health authority basis and not by National Health Service trust. The available information is in the table. The information is collected on a survey basis and shows the number of patients aged 75 and over, who are ready for discharge, but still occupy a hospital bed on a given day in the quarter. It is not the total number of delayed discharges in that quarter.

We have not issued any detailed guidance on models of health care in remote rural communities. However, we are currently reviewing issues relating to effective service configurations, including access to services for patients.It is the responsibility of individual health authorities to determine the most appropriate balance of health services for their populations, and they are accountable to the National Health Service Executive for doing so.