In order to free up beds, hospitals and local authorities were guaranteed £300 million four months ago. Following revelations that hospitals and councils have yet to receive these emergency funds, Rishi Sunak, prime minister of the UK, has been accused of misleading the public.
In September, the government declared that it would spend an additional £500 million to move as many medically fit people as possible out of hospitals and into their own homes or social care. This was intended to keep the NHS from being overburdened throughout winter.
Nevertheless, according to Guardian reports, the NHS and local councils have only received £200 million, or 40% of the emergency fund. The remaining £300 million is yet to appear and won't be paid until January 23. Reportedly, the first £200 million was not given until December 9 and the final £300 million won't be made accessible for at least another two weeks.
The adult social care discharge fund was announced by the government in September, and, as stated by Matthew Taylor, CEO of the NHS Confederation, NHS leaders initially applauded the move. In order for NHS organisations to collaborate effectively with their local council counterparts and bring the money to use promptly before winter, he continued, NHS leaders had stressed the importance of making the funding accessible to services as early as possible.
Sunak was called "delusional" by doctors on Tuesday as he claimed the NHS was not in financial trouble and that it had the resources necessary to handle current demands. Doctors and opposition parties responded to statements made by the prime minister's official spokesperson at a Downing Street meeting with derision, fury, and bewilderment. This was fuelled by growing rage over shortages and delays that may be resulting in avoidable deaths.
The spokesperson for Sunak recognised that the NHS was under significant strain and that several people were finding it extremely difficult to see a doctor, call an ambulance, or go to the emergency room. The representative, though, backed the government's initiatives to get the NHS ready for winter. “What I’m saying is that we recognised well in advance that this would be a challenging winter, and we have sought to put in place a number of measures to mitigate these challenges,” he told the Guardian.
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