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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Lack of community support leading to healthy patients taking up hospital beds

Healthy patients are taking up hundreds of thousands of hospital beds because there is not enough community support to allow them to go home.

Delayed discharges are when an older or vulnerable patient no longer requires acute care in hospital, but has no access to 'step-down' care in the community.

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Older People, Mary Butler, said it is having a very significant impact on the number of people left lying on trolleys in our hospitals' emergency departments.

Ms Butler said: "Today, for example, there are 398 patients waiting on trolleys to be admitted to hospital, but at the same time at the other end of the system we have lost 200,000 bed days last year because people could not be discharged as there was no place for them to go."