Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

Patients dying prematurely in A&E corridors, department heads warn Theresa May

Last month only three quarters of patients were seen within four hours at large A&Es Last month only three quarters of patients were seen within four hours at large A&EsPA
Ben Pena | 12 January, 2018, 21:45

This comes as official figures show NHS A&E waiting times have hit record levels.

In December 2016, 86.2% of A&E patients were seen in time, meaning the NHS success rate has fallen by 1.1% in just 12 months.

Esme Thomas, aged 87, was taken to the hospital on New Year's Day with breathing problems, but was not given a bed until the next day.

Non-urgent operations at the hospital were cancelled last week; a decision chief executive Christine Allen said "had not been taken lightly".

The hospital has apologised to Esme and her family and stressed it is under "extreme pressure" due to a huge increase in the number of "very ill" patients it is treating.

Dr Athar Yasin has co-signed a letter to Theresa May alongside consultants in charge of emergency care at 67 other hospitals which detail the "very serious concerns" they have for the "safety of our patients".

The recent collaboration between the Royal College of Emergency Medicine and NHS England, Health Education England and NHS Improvement will provide a medium term solution to grow our clinical workforce as well as decrease the attrition rate.

The number doubled the prior figure of 24 deaths this winter, upping the total to 48. They ended the letter signing on behalf of themselves and their departmental staff.

The, "facts remain, however, that the NHS is severely and chronically underfunded", they write.

"We are tenth outside all in ambulances containing patients now waiting to be admitted to the hospital", Ms Butler-Smith wrote on, as they waited in the queue.

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.

Recent media coverage has reported numerous anecdotal accounts of how appalling the situation in an increasing number of our Emergency Departments has become.

"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".

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The SNP leader spoke out as she came under sustained pressure from Ms Davidson, Labour leader Richard Leonard and Liberal Democrat Willie Rennie over the performance of the NHS this winter.

But the letter says: "Our experience at the frontline is that these plans have failed to deliver anywhere near what was needed".

"A lady joined the queue to see reception to asked why her 90-year-old mother was now still in an ambulance and have been sitting there for over two hours".

"So we have both the number of hospital beds falling in Scotland and the number of elderly social care places have fallen too".

"So thank you to the staff".

"Figures for the first week in January are about to be published by Health Protection Scotland and they show a further doubling of flu rates in Scotland".

"I've seen on the news your answer is "we are doing better than England".

"The hospital is extremely busy as would be expected during this winter period, and Trusts across the country are facing similar pressures".

However, the trust says it has seen a "significant" improvement in ambulance handover times this week.

Between Christmas Day and New Year's Eve, 68 ambulances waited for 30 to 60 minutes at A&E while 53 were delayed by an hour or more.

In the meantime we would like to apologise to our patients for being unable to fulfil our pledge for a safe efficient service and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of the staff.

"While we would not wish to deter anyone from seeking medical treatment, we would ask people to consider alternative options to A&E such as your local pharmacist or calling 111 or downloading our Choose Well App". For minor conditions, GPs, pharmacies and the NHS 111 service will be able to assist or to signpost to the most appropriate service.

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