Health bosses have insisted they are tackling bed blocking despite the latest figures suggesting a steep rise.
The latest figures showed 3,464 bed days were lost in Grampian in July due to delayed discharges.
It marks a 17% rise on the month before and is 10% higher than the national average.
NHS Grampian bosses will hear about the increase at a board meeting today.
The report prepared for members shows the vast majority of delays for north-east patients were put down to “health and social care reasons”.
The other 20% were due to specific and complex care needs or issues with the patient’s family.
The author acknowledged “fluctuations” from month to month but highlighted an overall downward trend.
Aberdeenshire was the worst affected area in July, with nearly one and a half as patients being left in limbo when healthy enough to leave hospital compared to June.
Patients spent a total of 1,523 extra days in hospital beds.
Aberdeenshire Health And Social Care Partnership oversees the different care options made available to help people out of hospital.
A spokesman last night said the July rise was more like a return to normal levels, after an anomaly of a month in June.
South Aberdeenshire partnership manager Iain Ramsay said: “Whilst the figures for July look dramatic they do not reflect the trend for Aberdeenshire over the last year, overall we consistently perform better than the Scottish average for delayed discharge and bed days lost.”
He added care was “based entirely on individual needs”.
Across Grampian, patients spent more than 3,300 wasted days in hospital that month.
The number of patients facing delays to leave hospitals fell in both Moray and Aberdeen – although the number of bed days lost still rose in the Granite City.
Health And Social Care Moray’s chief officer Pam Dudek said: “I am pleased that the changes that have been made to our process over the last few months are beginning to demonstrate improvements.
“We are making good progress, but we know that more can be done. A key part of this process is recruitment.”
A spokesman for the Aberdeen City partnership added: “We are happy with the consistent progress we have made over what is now a sustained period of time – but we recognise that there is more to do.”