Leeds City Council has announced a multi-million pound contract to create 72 community beds across the city and its hospitals.
Further details have emerged today on Leeds’ innovative scheme to provide beds for people coming out of hospital.
It comes at a time when the NHS and local councils often come under fire for not providing enough facilities.
Leeds Clinical Commissioning Groups will provide over 190 new community beds across the region in the coming months. The beds will be used for those leaving intensive care after surgery or other hospital treatment to help patients return to normal life.
The facilities that will take on the new beds will be the South Leeds Independence Centre, or the SLIC, in Beeston and Suffolk Court, in Yeadon.
NEWS:Planned operations will go ahead at St James’s Hospital in #Leeds today. They were cancelled yesterday because of a lack of beds.
— BBC Radio Leeds (@BBCLeeds) 14 December 2016
This plan demonstrates Leeds City Council’s commitment to better health care through alleviating the stress on NHS waiting times and improving the quality of care it can provide.
Better care, better jobs
Councillor Rebecca Charlwood, the City Council executive member for health, wellbeing and adults said:
“We’re pleased to have secured the future of The Green, SLIC and Suffolk Court. Our successful bid endorses the council’s strategy in investing in recovery services, demonstrating that despite financial challenges, we remain innovative in our approach to help people recover and reclaim their independence.
“It also means new job opportunities as we will need to increase our staffing levels to deliver these facilities.”
Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust is ranked 594th in the world for overall care and facilities with Nuffield Health Hospitals, which is also located in Leeds, is ranked 229th overall according to the online ranking web of hospitals.
Michael Williams, 29 from Horsforth, Leeds said: “I think its a good job that the council are doing for the NHS in Leeds. You know, my dad is getting on a bit and you always want to know that there would be a bed available if the worst happened.”
Kieran Ferdinand, a Leeds City Council officer, said: “Ideally the beds will be finished by November. These beds will become particularly pertinent as the months get colder and the pressures on the NHS will increase.”
The average hospital bed costs the health service up to £400 per day, according to the NHS. Trusts accumulate vast amounts of debt due to healthy patients being kept in hospital beds, increasing the waiting list even further.
Overall staffing levels within the NHS have dwindled the over past years which makes delivering high-quality care difficult, especially in the cold winter months when hospital admittance increases, particularly among the elderly and most vulnerable.
By George Webber and Oliver Kelly