“BED BLOCKING” ON THE RISE AT QUEEN ELIZABETH HOSPITAL AGAIN: SO SAD IT REARS ITS HEAD AT ELECTION TIME, WILL DONVILLE BE UPSET?

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital has seen an increase in the number of abandoned patients since the beginning of the year. Currently there are 52 persons who have been deemed medically fit for discharge but continue to remain in beds at the QEH. {Ed’s NoteBut why reveal now? Would the ruling party want this with 2 days before Elections?}

The combination of persons who are occupying necessary bed space include nine young for care and 43 elderly for care of which six persons are blocking beds in the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E).

The combination of persons who are occupying necessary bed space include nine young for care and 43 elderly for care of which six persons are blocking beds in the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E).

Dr. Dexter James, chief executive officer, QEH explained that the problem creates a “bed blocking” phenomenon that impacts the flow of in-patient and emergency care at the Hospital;

“We have noted in some of the cases we have noted that families have neglected to take care of their loved ones and as such the hospital is left to inappropriately left to care for these persons. If you have a set of people who should be moving out of the hospital but aren’t, our capacity to respond to new admissions is severely diminished and that leads to inefficiency and increased cost In all cases, persons who remain at the hospital after they have been cleared for discharge exposes the hospital to unnecessary risks and these individuals become more vulnerable to hospital acquired infections, pressure sores, decreasing mobility and depression.”

"At the moment we have 17 patients awaiting admission to the hospital. Ultimately this situation leads to increased waiting times in the A&E as patients presenting to this department for genuine emergencies and life threatening conditions are unable to be seen within a reasonable time or immediately admitted to a ward."

At the moment we have 17 patients awaiting admission to the hospital. Ultimately this situation leads to increased waiting times in the A&E as patients presenting to this department for genuine emergencies and life threatening conditions are unable to be seen within a reasonable time or immediately admitted to a ward.

Mr. David Callendar, director, medical services elaborated on the trend; “This practice occurs almost daily but tends to peak especially during Crop Over, Christmas, Easter and other significant events. Consequently it creates major challenges for the hospital and affects the ability of our staff to provide a quick, efficient service to those awaiting admission and contributes to long waiting times in the A&E.

We are urging the relatives of those patients who have remained in the hospital after discharge, to liaise with the hospital or external social services departments to discuss arrangements to either return these persons to their home or have them transferred to an appropriate care facility.”

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