Hospital emergency readmission within 24 hours reached 71,398 in 2017-2018
In 2018, 70 NHS hospital trusts provided Healthwatch, a watchdog chaired by Sir Robert Francis, with daily breakdown of their data on emergency readmissions.
Figures obtained by Healthwatch revealed that the number of emergency readmissions within 30 days of discharge in 2017-2018 was 484,609. This is an increase by 21.8% from 2013-2014’s 397,952.
In 2013-2014 period, the emergency readmission within 48 hours was 82,674, It since increased by 30.5% in 2017-2018 to 107,960. These readmissions account for over one in five (21.5%) of the total
In 2017-2018, 71,398 people were readmitted to a hospital just one day after being send home. Compared to the 2017-2018 number, the emergency readmissions within 24h in 2013-2014 were 53,538. This shows a 33.3% increase over the five years.
In all cases, the number of emergency readmissions has raised by at least 20%, showing a definite rising trend.
The concern is that the patients are discharged too quickly. They are sent home before making a satisfactory recovery, to free up the beds for new arrivals from A&E. Too early discharges can cause distress and be detrimental to patients’ wellbeing.
Hospitals are experiencing severe shortage of beds. We are also currently going through a growing social care crisis, resulting in discharged patients also lacking access to help they require at home. The cuts in funding have heavily affected the state of our healthcare.
The emergency readmissions are costing the NHS financially, on top of the costs of the patients’ health.
Most common emergency readmissions include heart condition flare-ups, pressure sores, pneumonia, skin or urinary infections and falls at home amongst others, reports the Daily Mail Online. These should have most likely be picked up before discharging the patients in the first place.
We must remember that these figures aren’t even representative of the whole, as only 70 Hospital trusts out of the 125 asked provided their information. The numbers are likely to be bigger. Additionally, the population of older people is increasing, which can contribute towards the raising numbers of admissions in general.
Hospitals have a duty of care to their patients which they should keep and only discharge patients when they are ready. We believe that the health and care leaders really need to examine the issue to figure out how to improve this situation and decrease those numbers. The causes for increasing emergency readmissions need to be understood properly to implement improvements.
Have you suffered an injury or significant health repercussions due to an early discharge from a hospital? If so, you could be entitled to make a medical negligence claim.
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