Donald Cameron, Scottish Conservative MSP for the Highlands and Islands, has highlighted newly released figures which show that NHS Western Isles and NHS Highland have the highest rates of delayed discharge in Scotland. They stood at 25.3% and 15.5% compared to a Scottish average of 8.5%.
The figures for 2018/19 were released by the Information Services Division of NHS Scotland yesterday (Tuesday 17th September).
Mr Cameron said: “While the statistics indicate that NHS Highland and NHS Western Isles have the highest rates of delayed discharge, we should be cautious before leaping to conclusions.
“There may be factors relating to geography, the age profile of patients, and the availability of care homes, which have influenced the results.
“Nevertheless the overall picture in Scotland is that the SNP’s promises to eradicate delayed discharges have come to absolutely nothing as they are back up to more than half a million days, an increase of 6% in just one year. This means that people who should not have been in hospital occupied almost 9% of beds in NHS Scotland over the last year.
“It is a cause for concern that people may be staying in hospital longer than necessary, and I will certainly be in contact with the relevant authorities in the region to see if there is more that could be done to reduce the discharge times.”