Figures show elderly patients were ‘rushed’ into care homesIvy Madziva
Figures show elderly patients were ‘rushed’ into care homes.
‘Disgrace’: How elderly patients were ‘rushed’ into care homes at start of pandemic
Hundreds of elderly people were discharged from hospital into care homes and the community in the early days of the coronavirus crisis, new figures have shown.
The First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, said deaths in care homes during the coronavirus pandemic was a “source of deep personal regret”.
NHS data showed there were 1,108 delayed discharge – also known as “bed blocking” – patients in hospitals aged over 75 in February.
The number fell to 331 in April, though routine testing for Covid-19 of new admissions to care homes only began on April 21.
Many of those discharged from hospitals would have been sent to care homes or returned home to be looked after by carers or family members.
As the Scottish Conservatives said over 75s were “Chased out of hospital” Ms Sturgeon said they would also have been at risk had they stayed.
She said: “What has happened with deaths in care homes is a matter of deep regret. It’s certainly a matter of deep personal regret to me.
“We’ve seen a similar picture in care homes in many other countries across the world.
“At every stage we have sought and striven to do the right thing to protect those in our care homes.”
Jackson Carlaw, the leader of the Scottish Conservatives, said care homes were not protected.
He said: “These figures show very starkly how the over 75s were rushed out of hospital, either to care homes or back to the community.
“As we now know, they weren’t routinely tested for coronavirus.
“These were the most vulnerable people in our society and they were sent out of hospital to places where they would mingle with equally vulnerable individuals.
“The SNP government now needs to explain why so many over 75s were chased out of hospital during a global health pandemic without proper testing or protection.
“The situation has become an issue of national disgrace for the SNP.”
The latest coronavirus statistics showed there were 53 new cases reported but 40 were older cases just reported. There were 1168 people in hospital with confirmed or suspected coronavirus up by 1222 but the number confirmed was down by 23.
The number in intensive care increased by seven to 34.
There were 12 deaths registered in the last 24 hours taking the total to 2375.
In the Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS health board area, there was one new case reported giving a total since the outbreak began, of 3950.
The number in hospital was 332 down by 6 on the day before.
There were seven people in intensive care which has been the same number for the last three days.
The number in ICU has halved in the last two weeks.
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