Leader: '˜Failure to tackle issue is a disgrace'

it is easy to take a clinical view of so-called bed blocking statistics.

Thursday, 5th January 2017, 7:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th January 2017, 3:10 am
New statistics show the number of bed-blocking patients who have died.

A couple of hundred ‘bed days’ here, a few months delay here. Numbers going up or coming down by a certain percentage.

It is perhaps only when you have an elderly relative placed in the intolerable situation of being literally stuck in hospital for no reason that the real issue hits home. These patients are not statistics, they are someone’s mum, dad, or grandparent.

And they deserve better treatment at the end of their lives than to be left languishing on a hospital ward because of shortcomings in the system.

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Today we have for the first time the shocking statistic of the number of people who have died waiting to be discharged from hospital in the Lothians since the Scottish Government pledged to eradicate bed blocking from the NHS.

Critics say the figures are “horrifying” and show an urgent need for greater investment in social care to help both patients and overstretched hospitals.

We would agree.

While there are signs of progress there are still far too many patients being left in this position.

Funding is always the issue but the money must be found to solve this issue once and for all. After all the very people impacted by this are those most likely to have contributed the most to society during their lives, paying into the system on the understanding that they would be looked after in their old age.

That we are unable to do this is a disgrace.

Trainspotting

We’re delighted to see the world premiere of T2 has been confirmed for Edinburgh - where else could it have been staged. The eagerly anticipated film will provide a huge boost to the city in 2017. The countdown is on to January 22 and a bit of star-spotting.