South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has criticised the Scottish Government for failing to eradicate delayed discharge after a new report revealed the cost to NHS Dumfries and Galloway was still nearly £300,000 a month.

Figures released by the Scottish Government’s Information Services Division (ISD) Scotland today (6 November) show that in September this year 1,216 bed days were lost in NHS Dumfries and Galloway. This came at a cost of £271,168 to the local health board.

Last month Colin Smyth MSP revealed that in August this year delayed discharge had cost NHS Dumfries and Galloway £287,224.

In 2015, the then SNP Health Secretary, Shona Robinson, said she was, “absolutely determined,” to eradicate delayed discharge by the end of that year.

Delayed discharge is when a patient is medically cleared to go home but cannot leave hospital.

Colin Smyth MSP said, “Another month goes by and a thousand bed days have been lost in Dumfries and Galloway due to care packages not being in place for patients who are clinically fit to leave hospital. NHS Dumfries and Galloway have been looking at all measures from introducing new initiatives to freeing up resources to tackle delayed discharge but until the SNP Government increase funding for our NHS and social work departments in local authorities we will continue to see nearly hundreds of thousands of pounds being spent every month keeping people in hospital when they should be back home and that is just not good enough”

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