Russells Hall Hospital: Patient dies waiting for treatment

Marco Green
January 13, 2018

A warning is being sounded by NHS managers that non-emergency medical operations scheduled to take place at East Surrey Hospital may have to be cancelled.

He added: 'To say staff were at the end of their tethers would be a complete understatement.

The situation became steadily worse between Christmas and New Year's Eve - when a total of 726 beds were occupied by patients who no longer needed acute care across both trusts operating hospitals in Cumbria.

At Dudley's Russells Hall Hospital one third of patients faced delays in excess of 30 minutes, while one quarter of people arriving at New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton had the same problem.

On Sunday Throughout the Sunday there was an average of ten to 14 at Portsmouth's Queen Alexandra hospital queuing to unload patients.

It also followed new figures released today which revealed that delays in ambulances delivering patients to A&E departments in England had reached their highest level of the winter, as those waiting more than an hour almost doubled in a week. "We are urging the public to choose wisely when it comes to selecting which NHS service they need and to only call for an ambulance if it is a life-threatening emergency".

The prime minister told doctors and nurses in A&E: 'Thank you very much to all of you for everything you've done'.

BMA representative body chair Anthea Mowat said: 'What is happening in our A&Es is symptomatic of pressures across the entire system.

"After days of turmoil in the Welsh NHS, Labour's Health Secretary in Wales has finally broken cover after being conspicuous by his absence".

Chief Executive Tony Chambers said: "During extremely busy periods like this we do sometimes have to cancel procedures, but we do not do so lightly".

NHS Providers director of policy and strategy Saffron Cordery said: "The NHS has prepared for winter as never before, and now it is clear those plans are really being put to the test".

A spokesperson for the NHS trust that runs the hospital told BuzzFeed News that demand at the time was so high at the time of the family's arrival, it had been forced to declare an "internal significant incident".

"The hospital cannot redirect patients to any other hospital as none will accept them". Patients are treated according to clinical need, and those requiring urgent attention are seen promptly, however when we are facing high demand those with minor or less urgent needs may find that they are waiting longer. Cancer surgeries and time-critical procedures should proceed as planned, officials said.

It follows a BBC News investigation last month which found a five-fold increase in patients in England waiting more than four hours for admission since 2011.

Heroic staff at Doncaster Royal Infirmary are dealing with a "very high demand" in A&E as some non-urgent operations are cancelled. He said NHS staff were "heroic".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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