The availability – or lack of it – of NHS hospital beds is big news at the moment and rightly so, with the public imagination caught by the image of toddler Jack Newman, who had to be treated on a makeshift ‘bed’ made of two plastic chairs pushed together because no real bed was available for him.
Even BBC News, which often leaves news unmentioned if it’s inconvenient to the government, is giving the issue a high profile, with its ‘Victoria Derbyshire’ programme including it prominently this morning.
The right-wing press, meanwhile, is styling this a ‘bed-blocking scandal’, which is true as far as it goes – draconian Tory cuts to social care have resulted in huge numbers of frail patients having no safe place to go to from hospital and councils unwilling or unable to bear the cost of their care.
However, this perspective ignores – deliberately? – the…
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