Sir Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many inpatient beds there were in NHS community hospitals in England in (a) 1997, (b) 2010 and (c) 2022; and if he will make an assessment of trends in inpatient capacity in those hospitals between those dates. 
[Due for Answer on 12 January. Answered on 30 January.]
HOLDING ANSWER: The Department of Health and Social Care has indicated that it will not be possible to answer this question within the usual time period. An answer is being prepared and will be provided as soon as it is available.
The Minister of State for Social Care (Helen Whately): NHS England holds data on the number of community rehab beds in England collected monthly through the NHS Capacity Tracker, but this data is not available in 1997 and 2010. Monthly data collection on community rehab beds started in 2020, from which point capacity has increased. The Capacity Tracker shows there were 7,062 community rehab beds in August 2020, rising to 7,629 in January 2022 and 7,999 in January 2023.
A community hospital is a service which offers integrated health and social care services in the community. Therefore ‘community hospital’ functions are carried out in a range of places including intermediate care and rehab settings and District General hospitals, not just in buildings called community hospitals. NHS England therefore define beds on function rather than on place or building.