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The complex case discharge delay problem

Complex case discharge delays, also known as bed blocking or bed delays, are a longstanding and growing challenge throughout New York, the United States and the world. These delays happen for many reasons but are most commonly attributed to difficulty finding safe post-discharge care and lengthy administrative or legal processes. Individuals experiencing behavioral health, intellectual or developmental disabilities and/or co-occurring conditions are most profoundly impacted.

A lack of coordinated care options has created an environment where hundreds of New Yorkers with complex care needs unnecessarily languish in emergency departments and hospital beds annually, often for months or years. Hospitals are serving as a long-term destination rather than a way station for those who, once their acute care needs are met, are better served in a non-hospital setting.

In this white paper, HANYS explores the unintended consequences on patients, care delivery and associated costs, existing gaps in the care continuum, system design flaws and administrative obstacles, examples of work attempting to address this challenge and HANYS’ suggested actions to help in the short-term, while building long-term solutions

HANYS will continue to convene stakeholders and offer expertise in setting policy while strengthening relationships and establishing best practices across the field to achieve better patient outcomes. The association thanks its complex case discharge delays workgroup members for their guidance in developing this white paper.

Explore the white paper: