Families in Cornwall are being offered £1,000 ‘bribes’ to take their loved ones out of hospital in bid to ease growing healthcare crisis
- Families are being offered up to £1,200 to take their loved ones out of hospital
- Healthcare chiefs in Cornwall hope it will ease a growing healthcare crisis
- Cornish trusts are offering grants for taking friends and relatives out of hospital
Families are being offered up to £1,200 to take their loved ones out of hospital in a bid to ease a growing healthcare crisis.
Last month the Royal Cornwall Hospital declared a critical incident after up to 100 people were waiting to be seen in the emergency department with 25 ambulances queuing outside.
Local trusts are now offering grants for taking friends and relatives out of hospital ‘who have no clinical reason to be there’.
The NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group covers Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
Ambulances and patients are regularly having to queue outside the emergency department at the Royal Cornwall Hospital at Treliske, Truro
More than 5,000 people waited more than 12 hours in A&E before being seen by a doctor in September, a record high
It said reasons for the pressures ‘include the ongoing impact of Covid-19, pressure on staffing, and the needs for social care exceeding the available capacity to provide care for people away from hospital.’
A one-off grant of up to £1,200, through the Government’s national hospital discharge programme, is available for anyone who is ‘ready to leave hospital but needs a bit of extra care and support to return home’.
Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust medical director Dr Allister Grant said: ‘Please pick up friends or relatives as soon as we ask you to collect them… the quicker we can get someone home the quicker we can give the bed to another person who really needs it.’
Other measures reported include using a hotel to house patients and recruiting fire brigade drivers to help the ambulance service cope with very high demand.