Action to get hospital patients discharged earlier means none have been placed in temporary beds on corridors or makeshift ward areas at the city’s hospitals so far this winter.
Despite rising pressure on A&E departments, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust has not placed any patients in “non-designated” areas since May 2018, according to a report to its board meeting yesterday.
In December 2017, an average of 19 patients-a-day were in temporary areas, raising fears of cramped conditions on wards.
A report to the board meeting said: “Despite increasing attendances and non-elective admissions, the trust has successfully managed to have zero patients cared for in non-designated areas since May 2018, and this has been sustained as we have moved into the winter period.”
Measures to ease overcrowding at Leeds General Infirmary and St James’ Hospital include older people being more quickly assessed by specialist teams, so treatment starts sooner.
Clare Smith, interim chief operating officer at Leeds Teaching Hospitals, said: “Like every other NHS hospital in the region, our clinical teams are working extremely hard under tremendous pressure. The demand for health services, especially urgent care, is greater every year. This is even more so during the winter months.
“The city’s health and care system is working together to ensure that patients are cared for in the most appropriate setting, whether that be on a surgical ward, in intermediate care or in social services care homes.”