Saturday, 15 December, 2018

A&E waiting targets hit 14-year low as patients `die…

NHS official statistics show more than two million people attended NHS England hospital emergency departments last month A&E waiting targets hit 14-year low as patients `die…
Melissa Porter | 12 January, 2018, 18:03

According to a spokeswoman from the Department of Health and Social Care as a response to this letter, there is a 68.7% increase in the number of A&E consultants over the past 7-8 years and that "NHS was given top priority in the recent budget with an extra £2.8 billion allocated over the next two years".

In addition, nearly half a million patients called the NHS 111 helpline last week, the highest number ever.

Former NHS Trust chairman Roy Lilley told Sky News the figures were "a disaster".

With 34 escalation beds remaining open at the QEH and more than 5,000 people attending its A&E last month, chief executive Jon Green said "the pressure has not eased off".

The Vic managed to see just 40.1 per cent of patients turning up at A&E within four hours in December compared to the national average of 77.3 per cent.

Meanwhile trusts up and down the country are seeing no let up in pressure in the new year, with some fearing the worst is yet to come.

This includes a "significant increase" in social care funding allowing patients to be discharged earlier when possible, and a review of the number of hospital beds available for acute care.

In the letter, sent on Tuesday, they also warn her that the routine overcrowding of hospitals, and the fact that as few as 45 per cent of A&E arrivals are being seen within the target time of four hours at some hospitals, are putting patients' safety at risk.

"During this time pressures on our services led to an unusually large number of A and E breaches".

BMA Scotland, which represents Scottish doctors, warned on Wednesday the current situation should not be dismissed as "the inevitable increase in pressure that winter brings".

Going on to add that the NHS is severely and chronically underfunded and has insufficient resources to deal with an ageing population.

Mrs Smalley was left on a trolley in a corridor between 6am and 8am before being moved to a bed in the hospital, which declared a "major incident" over New Year and issued a plea for staff to volunteer for shifts.

The consultants draw on their own experiences - including patients dying prematurely, waiting times of 12 hours and more than 50 patients waiting for a hospital bed.

There was also a sharp rise in the number of flu cases presenting to Global Positioning System -up 78 % - from 21 per 100,000 to 37.3 per 100,000.

'The NHS today has launched their national flu programme and I would encourage people to act on the advice that the NHS is giving and also encourage NHS staff who haven't had the flu vaccine yet to have that vaccine'.

The only exceptions to this are cancer operations and what the NHS called "time-critical procedures" where the surgery has to go ahead to avoid the patient's condition deteriorating further.

Prioritisation to implement the workforce strategy that has been agreed between the Royal College and the relevant arms length bodies.

The latest figures from Public Health England (PHE) show the number of flu patients admitted to hospital were two-and-a-half times higher than at the same time previous year.

"We feel compelled to speak out in support of our hardworking and dedicated nursing, medical and allied health professional colleagues and for the very serious concerns we have for the safety of our patients", they wrote.