Join or Renew Online

You can now subscribe and join online - please click here

SNP’s failure costs NHS over half a million bed days

The number of bed days used for patients staying in hospital longer than necessary has increased to over half a million according to the latest figures published today.

Despite the SNP’s pledge to eradicate the problem, the annual summary from ISD shows that delayed discharges in 2018/19 have increased by 6 percent from the year before and are back up to more than half a million 521,772 days.

This means that people who should not have been in hospital occupied almost 9% of beds in NHS Scotland over the last year.

According to the latest information 35 percent of those unable to leave hospital were awaiting completion of care arrangements, 26 percent were awaiting place availability, and 16 percent were awaiting community care assessment.

Miles Briggs, the Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary has said that the figures demonstrate the “SNP’s profound and ongoing mismanagement of our NHS at all levels.”


Miles Briggs, Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary said:

“These shocking figures highlight the SNP’s profound and ongoing mismanagement of our NHS at all levels.

“Scottish patients and NHS staff are sick to the back teeth of SNP excuses; after 12 years in office and 4 SNP Health Ministers it is clear this SNP Government have no new ideas, no vision for our NHS and social care service.   

“The SNP’s promises to eradicate delayed discharge have come to absolutely nothing as over half a million bed days are now being taken up by patients in the wrong place. SNP pledges to patients are simply not worth the paper they are written on.

“For those stuck in hospital beds unnecessarily, staff and patients who need those beds, these delays are frustrating and traumatic.

“The SNP’s failure to eradicate delayed discharge is robbing NHS Scotland of almost 10 percent of its bed capacity just as the number of beds in our NHS continues to fall.

“SNP Ministers have failed to resource and reform social and community care and it is patients, families and our NHS paying the price.”  



Notes to editors:

The full report is available here -

Go to top

uk bg