This article was published on September 8th, 2016
A&E departments are the NHS’s essential emergency service, the place where you go when you are in excessive pain, severely injured from an accident or suffering a sudden debilitating illness, whatever your age. Highly skilled staff provide urgent, first class care which can often save lives especially if the care and diagnosis are given in good time.
The government sets the national target of 95% for A&E department to see patients within 4 hours of being admitted. The Sheffield NHS Trust, which manages the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, reported that they missed the target by nearly 10% in both June and July.
The hospital has explained the reasons for missing the targets during the summer months as being as a result of non-emergency patients clogging the system and the discharge process being delayed.
The director of strategy and operations at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“We have continued to see high numbers of people attending A&E throughout the summer, and on some days the attendances have been at a similar level to those we would expect in the busy winter months. Our staff work exceptionally hard and all patients are triaged on arrival.
“Even at our busiest times, on average eight out of ten patients are treated and discharged or admitted within four hours.
“In August performance increased and it is currently over 94 per cent.
The Sheffield NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) announced that an Urgent Care Delivery Board is being established specifically to tackle the reasons for missing A&E targets.
The CCG said:
“Local data for July indicates that Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Foundation Trust are not meeting the pledge, with only 86.49 per cent of patients seen/treated within four hours; this is a slight improvement on performance in June.
“Issues affecting the performance continue to be system-wide, including demand that could be managed out of a hospital setting, delays in patient flows through the system and, in some cases, delays in patients being discharged from hospital.”
“We have also seen an impact from the demand for social care experienced by the city council, which means a high number of patients who no longer need hospital care have not been able to be discharged as quickly as we would expect.
“The Urgent Care Delivery Board is a new national initiative, but for some months we have already been working with our partners across the city to ensure our system for urgent and emergency care works as well as it can – this is about much more than accident and emergency services.”
If you have been unfortunate enough to have experienced a poor medical care during a visit to your hospital then contact us now at Thorneycroft Solicitors today for a free no-obligation assessment of your case on 0800 1979 345 or complete our online enquiry form.
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