Plans to ease bed-blocking
FRESH attempts are being made to discharge more recovering patients from a hospital at weekends to free up scarce beds.
Fewer doctors performing ward rounds on Saturdays and Sundays means only half the numbers of patients are typically allowed home from the University Hospital of North Staffordshire than on weekdays.
Latest figures show that while an average of 70 new patients a day passing through A&E need a bed, medics discharge just 60 on weekdays. Those numbers need to rise particularly as the hospital is currently partway through a programme to slash more than 100 beds.
A report by trust officials says: "Weekend discharges reduce to half these levels despite consultant-led rounds now taking place on all medical wards. Actions being taken are being monitored and we expect performance to improve."
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It added that one third of the discharged patients leave before 1pm each day.