Delayed transfers of care (or DTOC) occur when a patient is ready to be discharged but must remain in hospital because the next stage of care is not in place. This could be the lack of a care home place or adequate support at home.

At the end of last week – 8th July – 88 people were waiting to leave hospital because they needed to move back home or into a care home, but the care was not available. Whereas last year at the same time there were 167 people waiting to leave hospital.

Rosalind Pearce, Executive Director, Healthwatch Oxfordshire, said: “Congratulations to all staff in hospitals and social care who are working so hard to make sure that elderly people are being looked after in the most appropriate way.

“This is a real ‘good news’ story which shows what can be achieved when organisations such as the NHS and county council work more closely together.

Healthwatch Oxfordshire would be interested to know more details of how they have achieved this, so that the lessons learned here can be shared with other parts of the country experiencing similar problems with delayed transfers of care.

“Health and care providers in Oxfordshire should be shouting loud and proud about how they have achieved this. We look forward to the day when no one is stuck in hospital.”