Thérèse Coffey considers paying care homes in England to free hospital beds

Posted: September 20th 2022


I like the sound of this approach, I just wonder in rural settings where the issue is the availability of staff, if this is not addressing the symptoms rather than the cause, that is unless there are lots of spare care workers ready to rise to the challenge…..

Thérèse Coffey is considering handing hundreds of millions of pounds to care homes to help free up hospital beds as part of her emergency plan to tackle the growing crisis in the NHS.

The new health secretary is examining proposals to pay care homes in England to look after patients who are medically fit to leave hospital but cannot be discharged because of a lack of social care.

Officials at the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) believe the scheme could tackle two major NHS problems at once, by freeing up some of the 13,000 hospital beds currently occupied by “delayed discharge” patients and improving handovers by ambulance crews to A&E staff.

If approved, the plan would become a key element of the strategy that ministers are expected to set out next week to address the multiple problems affecting the NHS, including long delays for A&E, GP and cancer care and hospital beds. In her inaugural speech as prime minister outside 10 Downing Street on Tuesday, Liz Truss identified the NHS as one of her “three early priorities”.

“I will make sure that people can get doctors’ appointments and the NHS services they need. We will put our health service on a firm footing,” Truss pledged, though she gave no details.