Kirklees given £2m NHS winter windfall to free up hospital beds

Matt Hancock
Matt Hancock

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has released millions of pounds to help free up hospital beds during the winter months.

The £240m war chest is aimed at reducing delayed transfers of care but is also targeted at patients when they return to their homes.

Dewsbury Hospital

Dewsbury Hospital

Yorkshire and the Humber has been allocated almost £24.5m of which Kirklees will receive £1.9m.

Calderdale will receive £920,617.

Mr Hancock said the new funding was in addition to previous cash earmarked for building upgrades.

“We will use this money to help people who don’t need to be in hospital but do need care, to get back home, into their communities.

“We can then free up those vital hospital beds and help more people get the hospital care they need.”

The government says delays attributable to adult social care have been reduced by 39% across England since February last year.

It says this is due to ensuring patients return home from hospital once their treatment has finished.

Local authorities have been allocated the funding based on the adult social care relative needs formula.

It will be spent on home care packages to help patients get out of hospital quick, “reablement packages”, which support workers to help patients carry out everyday tasks and regain mobility and confidence, and home adaptations, including new facilities for personal care, such as adapting a shower room if a patient has limited movement

The latest investment follows £145m released to NHS trusts in September to boost winter resilience, upgrade wards, redevelop A&E departments and pay for 900 extra beds.

In June ambulance trusts were awarded £36.3m to prepare for the winter. Some cash will go towards buying 256 new ambulances.

The health service will receive an additional £1.6bn during 2018/19.

For the first time, children in school year 5 will be offered the flu vaccine, meaning as a result that all children aged between two and nine will be offered the flu vaccine.