A new report has said that the UK's health service is likely to waste around £3.3 billion during the coming five years on "bed blocking" as the number of patients increases in hospitals.
The new study conducted by ResPublica showed that delayed transfers in England are becoming a growing problem in the health system and the government has not taken adequate steps to address the issue. The think tank urged the government to increase investment in social care in order to reduce the numbers of people relying on the NHS even as they become medically fit to get discharged.
An earlier study of NHS finances commissioned by the Government has showed that there were about 8,500 bed- blocking patients every day in the health system costing around£900 million a year to the NHS.
Exerts said that bed blocking is a situation when patients are medically fit to leave the hospital but are unable to do so as care has not been organised in the community. Report said that the cost of bed blocking might reach £3.3 billion by
2020-2021. Researchers expect a 24 per cent rise in the number of delayed transfer of care beds between 2015-2016 and 2020-2021.
"This would generate a surplus of £2.4 billion currently due to be spent on inappropriate in-hospital care for patients," the study said. The report also said that Better Care Fund introduced by the government to integrate health and social care has so for not able to achieve its goal and address the issue.