Too many Cornish healthcare log-jams
Patients needing ongoing care have flowed freely through Cornwall's healthcare system for just three periods in eight months.
The claim was made as Cornwall councillors yesterday examined a major hospital alert which saw the cancellation of dozens of operations and long delays.
On October 7, the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust (RCHT) had more than 50 patients waiting for discharge to social care or a community hospital bed.
The meeting was told that at present the system status was 'green' with no delays.
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RCHT said they currently had less than 20 patients awaiting discharge. Cornwall Council said it had only six people waiting for their social care package. Peninsula Community Health, which runs cottage hospitals in Cornwall, said it had 26 beds available.
However RCHT chief executive Lezli Boswell told councillors this was the exception. "Last time the system was green was August 2013, and the time before that was March 2013," she said.
"Today is an unusual picture and we have to share the reality of this."