Due to a backlog in social care, a patient in Wales has been hospitalized for weeks

Richard Ford

Roger remarked, "I'd much rather be outside than inside.".

From the window next to his bed at the Royal Gwent Hospital, the 69-year-old cast longing glances across Newport.

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He is now healthy enough to leave, and he is desperate to, but he cannot.

He declared, "I've still got a smile on my face, but I'm feeling a little down.".

"I don't have the faintest idea of when I'll be able to return home. I am crossing my fingers. since a significant difference will result. ".

When Roger will be able to return home is unknown.

Since Roger has cerebral palsy and the effects of his recent illness must be considered, additional care must be set up before he can return home without risk.

He is confined to a ward without televisions until then. On his phone, he watches whatever he can.

Not by himself, Roger.

Senior nurse Helen Price at the hospital stated that "at least a quarter of patients in our care of the elderly beds are in a similar situation.".

The wait for that care, she said, is "very much a waiting game.".

According to the most recent statistics, hospitals in Wales are more full than ever.

The Welsh NHS saw its highest-ever occupancy rate in the final week of January, when more than 95% of all acute beds were filled.

The work of the entire health board is being impacted by these delays, not just on specific patients and staff members.

There are well over 350 patients in the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board's urgent care who, according to Paul Underwood, are medically able to leave the hospital.

According to him, it's extremely challenging to accommodate the roughly one-third of patients who don't require it on those sites.

Paul Underwood
According to Paul Underwood, well over 350 patients are in a state where they can be released.

Since local governments are largely in charge of social care, these bottlenecks are frequently out of the NHS's control.

Regardless of the cause, hospitals are now more full than ever due to the significant impact on the health service.

There are many more patients in line for beds than there are patients like Roger who are waiting to leave.

Only two acute beds are available on the day of my visit across the entire health board. However, patients continue to arrive.

The Grange University Hospital's emergency department
The emergency room at The Grange University Hospital is one of the busiest in Wales.

I observe the effects at one of Wales' busiest emergency departments, the Grange University Hospital in Cwmbran, six miles north of the Royal Gwent.

The waiting area and the majority of the department's beds or trolleys are already full by mid-morning. There are 68 patients in total present.

Frances Evans, 85, from Tredegar, is one of them. Her chest injury is being examined. On the other hand, the day before, she had spent eight hours in the ambulance's back outside the hospital.

I was in the ambulance from ten in the morning until six at night, she claimed. "And I had to travel back and forth for the tests because it was so busy. ".

According to Frances, "some people abuse the system" and "the NHS has a lot too much to do.".

However, I'm surprised by the staff's comments that this morning is "relatively pleasant" in comparison to a lot of what they have encountered this winter.

Leading nurse Claire Parks noted that there have been days when the department saw more than 200 patients, which she calls "record-breaking numbers.".

She added that some of the emergency room patients were "waiting in chairs" for days. "The holiday season was some of the worst I've seen in 25 years," she said.

Because you're not providing the level of care you want, you do feel like crying as you leave. ".

According to a Welsh government spokesperson, "We are investing record amounts in health and care services and are doing everything we can to support health boards in their efforts to improve the flow through the healthcare system.

In order to help people leave hospitals and receive care closer to home, we secured more than 600 additional community beds and social care packages this winter, and we're working to provide even more. ".

When a car squeals up to the Aandamp;E's front door, the value of having extra capacity becomes abundantly clear.

A mother who just gave birth is sitting in the passenger seat. Doctors, nurses, and paramedics swarm to the scene.

Mother and child are taken in Resus [Resuscitation], the section of A, in a matter of seconds.

As a consultant in the department, Dr. Owain Chandler said, "That's a good example of why we always need capacity because we never know what's around the corner.".

The risk would have been that we might occasionally have had to bring them into Resus without a cubicle prepared, scanning the room to see who is the least ill patient we can pull out. and performing that on the fly. ".

But the result today is a joyful one.

A few hours later, as they get ready to leave for home, I meet baby William and his parents Andrea and Adam Sheppard on the maternity ward.

There was nothing lacking from the staff, Adam said.

As soon as the paramedic arrived, four or five more people arrived at the door. ample staff available to assist. ".

With a big smile, Andrea agreed that there were "no problems" and said, "The baby is perfect.".

The staff's willingness to go above and beyond in the face of constant pressure will be forever appreciated by the family.

Perhaps a glimmer of hope during what has been the coldest winter for the NHS.

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