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An opportunity was indeed missed in the discussions about reducing the use hospital beds. It was to present evidence that the problem must be addressed within hospitals, not in the community.
The 25% of inpatients who would rather be in the community are currently waiting for the complex processes of arranging their care to be completed. They are like cars queuing at traffic lights on red. The solution is to have the lights on green for more of the time. The people who can make this happen are the lead decision makers, namely consultants.
One example of evidence to support this comes from Liverpool, where changing from twice weekly to twice daily consultant ward rounds reduced average length of stay by 50%, without an increase in readmissions or mortality.