Complications can arise from prolonged hospital stays, with delayed discharges resulting in poor outcomes for patients and healthcare providers alike.

A prolonged stay is one of 21 days or over, and complications are more likely the longer they’re in hospital.

Once that stay has gone over 90 days, there are even higher chances of a poor outcome for the patient. Unstable patient condition causes around 30% of these extended stays, problems around caregiving account for a further 30%, and a quarter are receiving palliative care.

Common complications

Some of the most common complications associated with prolonged hospitalisation are:

  • Increased mortality
  • Hospital-acquired infection
  • Pneumonia
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Bedsores
  • Urinary tract infections

How often do these complications occur?

When a patient has been in hospital for more than 90 days, statistics show us that 40% will remain bedridden, and 22% will be re-admitted.

We also know that a quarter of patients who have a prolonged stay of over 21 days experience at least one medical complication, with pneumonia being among the most likely (occurring in 9% of cases).

Sadly, the 30-day mortality rate stands at 8.9% and the one-year mortality rate is 21%.

Impacts of prolonged hospital stays on the health system

As well as the impacts on patient safety, delayed discharges also have an impact on the overall health system.

This can include patient safety challenges arising from hospital overcrowding and reduced accessibility to the finite care resources available. In addition, costs rise when patients who could be receiving at-home care remain longer in hospital.

How Belgravia can help avoid prolonged hospital stays

By providing a full range of at-home healthcare services, we are able to support clients to be safely discharged from hospital, safe in the knowledge they have a robust care package in place.

Our DHA licensed and UK trained nurses and medical team are able to look after patients with a wide variety of health conditions. This includes those with complex needs which require a high level of support.

We can arrange blood tests at home and schedule doctor visits to ensure adequate ongoing monitoring. And we liaise with each client to ensure the care we provide enables them to be discharged from the hospital as soon as it’s clinically safe to do so, staying at home long-term in the comforts of their own surroundings.

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