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Beds blocked at York hospital   

There is a continuing problem with delayed discharges at hospital in York. The latest figures suggest that the problem is currently worse in York than elsewhere in the region (and nationally).

Delayed discharges in York

A report to a York Council committee meeting next week makes the following comments on the delayed transfer of care;

This measures the impact of hospital services and community-based care in facilitating timely and appropriate transfer from all hospitals for all adults. This indicates the ability of the whole system to ensure appropriate transfer from hospital for the entire adult population. It is an important marker of the effective joint working of local partners, and is a measure of the effectiveness of the interface between health and social care services.

Discharges are made from Acute and Non Acute Care Pathways.

Discharges from Acute Care Indicators are on Target. Performance has shown a steady improvement over the end of 2015-16 and into the first half of this year”.

However, “discharges from Non Acute Care: Indicators here are not on Target. Performance had shown an improvement in the first quarter, however, from June 2016, an increase in Non Acute Delays, particularly in Mental Health has pushed the numbers back up and off target for the year”.

“The overall indicator is not on target due to the effect of Non Acute Delays in the System. We are taking the learning and processes from our success in Acute Care and applying these to the Non Acute pathway. Since June a Sitrep process has been put in place to monitor delays in Mental Health to mirror that of our Acute and Non Acute Hospital processes. In other areas of the Non-Acute pathway a similar approach to monitoring”.

The effect that “bed blocking” is having on in delaying the admission of new patients requiring hospital services in not stated in the report.

What’s on in York: Talks and lectures at The Minster

Click link for more details



Latest planning application for the Westfield Ward

Below is the latest planning application received by the York Council for the Westfield ward.

Full details can be found by clicking the words highlighted in blue


72 Askham Lane York YO24 3HP

Construction of a vehicle crossing including dropped kerb

Reference           17/00245/FUL


 Representations can be made in favour of, or in objection to, any application via the Planning on line web site.

The Council now no longer routinely consults neighbours by letter when an application is received

What’s on in York: Meet the Vikings at York Minster!

As part of the York Viking Festival – Meet the Vikings!

  • 21-23 Feb 17


FREE (Standard admission applies)

Tuesday 21st, Wednesday 22nd and Thursday 23rd, 10am-3pm, at York Minster.

Handle authentic and replica Viking artefacts, learn how to play a Viking board game, and discover more about the mystery that is York Minster during the Viking period.

Find out more about Vikings and their relationship with Christianity at one of our short spotlight talks, at 12:00 and 14:00.

Discover Viking stories with exciting storytelling at 11:00 and 13:00.

Activities above are free with standard admission.Admission ticket lasts for 12 months. Family 12-month ticket from £10 (valid for up to 4 children visiting the Minster with 1 adult). FREE admission to Minster for York residents with York card.

Wednesday 22nd 10am-3pm

Make a Viking Long Boat!

Suitable for ages 5+. £2.50 per participant. Standard admission charges apply.

Another big York Council contract let in behind closed doors decision

£1 million plus contract for social care started on 1st February 2017 – authorised last week

In April 2016, the York Council considered a major shake-up in its housing support programme. The service had been costing York taxpayers over £2.5 million a year.

The users of this support programmes short term services include the homeless, young people at risk (16-25 year olds including care leavers and teenage parents) offenders, mental health, substance misuse and domestic violence.

Long term services support residents with permanent needs including older people; learning disabilities and mental health.

A report to the Council’s Executive last April said,

The approach is one of “co-design” with the Council setting some minimum requirements but requesting providers to submit proposals that identify the added value that can be provided and setting out a five-year vision for service delivery which will further enhance provision across the City”

It was expected the the new approach would save taxpayers around £750,000 a year. The new approach anticipated an increase in activity by volunteers.

At about the same time the government announced a cap on the total amount of housing benefit payable to social housing tenants. At the time this was expected to impact heavily on supported accommodation services  like hostels.

The 2016 report said,

There is however apprehension amongst providers and partners regarding the significant service change that will take place and any resulting reductions in capacity. Some customers have also expressed anxiety over potential change of providers but this will not be known until after the outcome of the proposed “tender” exercise”.

The services put out to tender were Community Wellbeing and Support Services for:

  • Adults (including Mental Health, Homeless, substance misuse, offenders and Young People)
  • Older Persons
  • Young People – Supported Lodgings

The expected total cost of providing these services was £1.27 million (a saving of £750,000)

It had been anticipated that the contract would be awarded in September 2016 with implementation from 1st February 2017.

It appears that the contracts have only recently been authorised although they were implemented at the beginning of the month. (There is a suspicion that the responsible Council official actually agreed the contract in December).

Papers were published on the Council’s web site on Friday but reveal very little either about the cost of the new contracts or their specifications (i.e. targets, outcomes).

September 2017 specification promise

There will be a suspicion that these have only been made public as an afterthought and were possibly prompted by last week’s revelations about previous contract failures.

The three contacts awarded were:

So, substantial contracts have been let apparently without the involvement of the responsible Councillors, with no visibility of the “vision”, the number of tenders received haven’t been reported, nor has the value of the individual contracts or the expected outcome specification/targets.

Some further explanations are needed we think!

*Bizarrely the report claims that the specification for this service will not be agreed until “Sept 2017”

What’s on in York: Richard Holloway – A Little History of Religion


York Explore Library :

Mon 20 Feb :

6.00pm – 7.30pm :

£6 (£5 with a York Card)

Feb _20Richard Holloway1Richard Holloway is the former head of the Anglican Church in Scotland who famously stopped believing in God. He is now a popular broadcaster and prolific writer and has frequently spoken about his lifelong struggle to believe. A Little History of Religion was published in 2016 and was described in The Guardian as ‘even-handed, elegant and compelling’.

Richard will be discussing A Little History of Religion in this lively and though-provoking event from an excellent speaker.

For more information or to book a ticket please call York Explore Library on (01904) 552828 (answerphone) or

Tickets can also be bought online at

York Police scam alert


The police have issued the following warning, ”

NHS members are being targeted by tax rebate companies, purporting to offer services whereby they obtain a tax rebate on the victim’s behalf. However, the company obtains the refund but does not provide any of the funds to their customer, leaving victims over £34,000 out of pocket.

Information suggests that the companies have managed to infiltrate NHS practices/hospitals as part of training/open days and in lunchtime meeting sessions for staff. They also advertise their services to staff members and have been known to set up stands in the reception or restaurant areas.

The companies request the victim sign forms which give them permission to liaise with HMRC on their behalf, stating their fee will be charged to the rebate received. HMRC have confirmed that they have issued refunds to the companies in relation to requests received and authorised by the staff member. Once the refund is obtained all contact with the companies are broken and the victim does not receive their rebate.

Tax rebate fraud does not only affect NHS staff but can also affect Police Officers, airline staff and teachers. However this list of professions is not exclusive and anyone can be targeted.

Crime Prevention Advice
  • · Do research online to ensure the company is reputable by checking the registration details are correct and by viewing feedback online.
  • · Do not feel pressured to sign documentation without doing some basic checks.
  • · Do not respond to unsolicited emails, texts or calls offering rebate services.
  • · Make sure that you are aware and agree to the commission that will be paid to a rebate company prior to signing any documents.

· If you have been affected by this, or any other fraud, report it to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040, or visiting

Incident at Lendal Bridge, York

Serious delays to bus services in York

Police attended the Lendal Bridge scene at 3.03am Friday 17 February 2017 where a man had been found with serious injuries at the bottom of the steps on Dame Judi Dench Walk, Lendal Bridge in York.

The 25-year-old man from London has been taken to LGI where he remains in a critical condition.

Lendal Bridge is currently closed whilst police conduct an investigation to determine the full circumstances of the incident.

Anyone who witnessed anything which would be helpful to the investigation is asked to contact police on 101, select option 1 and speak to the Force Control Room. Please quote reference 12170027352.

Tourist visitor numbers to UK increasing

According to the ONS both the number of people visiting the Uk and UK residents visiting abroad increased during the last quarter of 2016

Overseas residents made 9.2 million visits to the UK in the 3 months to December 2016. This was 6% higher than the same 3 months in 2015.

The amount spent on these visits was unchanged at £5.3 billion.

Visits from North America increased by 15% in the 3 months to December 2016, when compared with the same 3 months in 2015. Visits from residents of EU countries increased by 8% over the same period and visits from residents of other countries (countries other than Europe and North America) decreased by 3%.

In the 3 months to December 2016, overseas residents made 11% more visits for holidays than in the same period in 2015, trips to visit friends and relatives increased by 15%, while business visits decreased by 1%.

UK residents made 14.6 million visits abroad in the 3 months to December 2016, an increase of 8% compared with the same period in 2015. There was a 16% increase in trips to visit friends and relatives, the number of holidays increased by 7%, but business visits decreased by 2%.

The amount spent on visits overseas increased by 15% to £9 billion.