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Government invests £200m to buy four-week discharge beds

Up to £200 million will be available from local authorities to buy care home beds for up to four weeks.

The Government-backed funding funding aims to support hospital discharge until the end of March. Government estimates that there are currently around 13,000 people occupying hospital beds in England who are fit to be discharged.

The £200 million, which is in addition to the £500 million Adult Social Care Discharge Fund, will be supported by other initiatives to improve discharge.

This includes £50 million in capital funding to expand hospital discharge lounges and ambulance hubs and a multi-location trial of  long-term solutions.

These include: specialised dementia hubs (The Northern Care Alliance); data and real-time intelligence between care settings (Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care System).

Cllr David Fothergill, chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “A sustainable NHS depends on a sustainable social care system. Recent additional funding announced by the Government for adult social care is a step forward but falls significantly short of the £13 billion we have called for to address the severity of the pressure facing social care services. Additional investment in community health services including therapies that can support recovery is also urgently needed.”

Minister for Care Helen Whately said: “These problems are not new but now is the time to fix them for the future.”

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