Delayed Discharges in NHSScotland

These data provide monthly information on the number of hospital bed days occupied by people delayed in their discharge and the number of people experiencing a delay in discharge from hospital at the monthly census point. The data relate to people aged 18 and over who were clinically ready for discharge. Figures are shown for Scotland, NHS Board of delay and Council area / Local authority of residence.

Further information on delayed discharges can be found in the monthly and annual publications. The date of the next release can be found on our list of forthcoming publications.

Data and Resources

Additional Info

Field Value
Source PHS Delayed Discharge monthly data submission
Author PHS Delayed Discharge team
Version 1.0
Last Updated May 7, 2024, 09:31 (BST)
Created March 12, 2020, 09:40 (GMT)
Contact Address Public Health Scotland, Gyle Square, 1 South Gyle Crescent, Edinburgh EH12 9EB
Subject Health and Social Care
Frequency Monthly
Time frame of data and timeliness Data are available for publication within around six weeks from the end of the calendar month
Coverage Data are provided for delays of one or more days in NHS hospitals within the 14 territorial health boards
Completeness 100% of the data is used for analysis
Accuracy The data are considered accurate. Data are validated locally by partnerships. PHS carry out further validation checks in consultation with NHS Boards.
Continuity of data NHS Boards submit delayed discharge information to PHS for national reporting purposes. Some NHS Boards used the EDISON system to record people delayed in their discharge from hospital. During 2018 EDISON was retired and affected Boards migrated to their own local system solutions. NHS Boards are still required to report on delayed discharges as specified in the data definitions and national reporting requirements effective 1 July 2016, therefore figures remain comparable and we do not expect any reduction in the quality of the data. Revised data definitions manual and national data requirements were effective 1 July 2016. For detailed changes to the definitions since 2005, see page 2 of the latest Delayed Discharge Definitions Manual effective 1 July 2016 and a summary of changes and impact on national reporting. Limited trend information is available pre and post July 2016 due to the definitional changes and relevant notes have been added to explain this.
Concepts and definitions The delayed discharge data definitions manual (effective from 1 July 2016), national data requirements (effective 1 July 2016), a summary of PHS validation checks and background information are published on the PHS website and direct weblinks can be found under Links.
Disclosure PHS's Statistical Disclosure Protocol is followed
Revision statement This publication has revisions to census figures. Following the consultation on Delayed Discharges, from the June 2022 annual publication the census figures for July 2016 onwards, include delays due to infection control measures in place at hospital or care home (Code 9 delay reason codes 26X and 46X). Figures may be subject to change in future releases, as per PHS's Statistical Revisions Policy.
Official statistics designation National Statistics
Relevance and key uses of the statistics Key uses of delayed discharge information include monitoring policy obligations both locally and nationally, helping to troubleshoot in partnership areas with specific problems, facilitating benchmarking with other areas, identifying the potential release of resources to focus on more appropriate care and providing useful dialogue between health and social care agencies. Delayed discharge information is also used to respond to information requests (including FOI requests) from a variety of customers and parliamentary questions.
Format csv
Language English

Delayed Discharge Data Definitions

Delayed Discharge National Reporting requirements

Data Quality Assurance Checks

Background and Glossary

Delayed Discharges section of the PHS Data and Intelligence website.

Delayed Discharges publications

Forthcoming publications

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