Patients trapped at UHCW as bed-blocking crisis deepens in Coventry

Statistics have revealed that bed-blocking is a major issue in Coventry and Warwickshire
-Credit: (Image: Peter Byrne/PA Wire)


Patients have been stuck at University Hospital Coventry for weeks on end amid a bed-blocking crisis in England. It is continuing to place immense pressure on the NHS in Coventry and Warwickshire.

Data from NHS England found that more than half of available hospital beds are out of bounds due to delayed discharges at NHS Integrated Care Boards (ICBs) across England. Around 12,700 people a day were told they could not leave despite being declared medically fit, according to Patient Claim Line.

It means that 53% of patients who no longer meet the criteria are 'blocking' hospital beds across England. Coventry and Warwickshire were found to have the second-highest percentage of medically fit patients waiting to be discharged, including at University Hospital Coventry in Walsgrave.

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Patients may be told that they cannot leave for reasons such as awaiting the availability of a bed in a nursing home or waiting for medicines to take home, according to Patient Claim Line. Statistics revealed that the Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Board (ICB) had the second-highest percentage of bed-blocking patients at a staggering 67 per cent as of April 30.

Birmingham and Solihull were the worst affected, with 80 per cent of beds being 'blocked' by patients who no longer needed treatment, according to Patient Claim Line. Behind Coventry and Warwickshire were Chesire and Merseyside, where 65 per cent of available beds were taken up by patients well enough to be discharged.

Data revealed that 108,638 patients in England have had a length of 21+ additional bed days as of April 2024. According to the Kings Fund, the cost of delayed discharges is £395 per night, making these additional days cost the NHS over £858m.

Jennifer Argent, Solicitor at Patient Claim Line, said: “It is disappointing to see a significant number of patients occupying beds that do not meet the criteria to reside in hospitals. Not only does this affect the number of beds available for patient care, but it has the potential to cause distress to patients who are experiencing unnecessarily long stays in hospital.”

Ms Argent added: “If you have been unable to receive safe and timely treatment, due to an absence of available hospital beds, you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation.”

Officials at the NHS Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Board told CoventryLive that the figures did not include a submission from the George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust making them 'incomplete.' A spokesman said they were therefore not an 'accurate representation of the discharge figures for Coventry and Warwickshire.'

Have you been affected by this? Email: jaspreet.kaur@reachplc.com

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