As the population continues to grow, saving “bed days” as health professionals call the length of time each patient is in hospital is an increasingly difficult problem to solve. How can the health service make efficiencies when more and more people are needing longer care and often have no where else to go, even when physically fit enough to be discharged? Such is often the case with up to 30,000 patients per year, many of whom may have dementia and no carer or may be waiting for a place in a nursing home.
NHS England is now reviewing proposals for “hospital hotels,” in which private hotel companies could bid to run various facilities. Hospital hotels could provide the comfort many patients crave, as well as additional benefits of opportunities for socialisation, more privacy and much more flexible family visiting options.