WHA at one point last year said more than 600 patients were occupying hospital beds while awaiting admission to a nursing home or other long-term care provider. According to Borgerding, this remains “a major concern” for his organization.

“That is unfortunately a perfect example of the damage done to the health care system by COVID that has not rebounded,” he said. “You look at the numbers of patients in a hospital waiting for a discharge to a post-acute care facility, and it’s darn near as bad as it was during the heights of COVID. This problem is just not getting better.”

Going into 2023, he said officials need to “think differently” about this issue, noting the state has “pumped hundreds of millions of dollars” into skilled nursing facilities to help address the hospital capacity problem.

“It’s made zero difference,” he said. “That is a problem that has gotten worse and has stayed worse, unfortunately … money is important but it’s clearly not solving this problem.”

See more hospital data from the Department of Health Services here.