Waits increase at A&E units

QEH General Views of the outside of the hospital ANL-150525-110929009
QEH General Views of the outside of the hospital ANL-150525-110929009
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More than one-in-five patients have had to wait more than four hours for treatment in an accident and emergency unit serving Fenland.

Only 79.8 per cent of patients attending the unit at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) in King’s Lynn were seen within the time limit in February, according to new data published on Thursday.

Managers say the number of patients attending the unit is higher than this time last year, while lower levels of patient discharges are also increasing the pressure.

Patricia Dunmore, the hospital’s interim chief operating officer, said: “With our healthcare partners, we are working to rapidly address these issues.”

The picture is slightly better within the Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Trust, where 81.1 per cent of A&E patients were seen within four hours in February, and at the Hinchingbrooke Hospital, Huntingdon, where the figure was 86 per cent.

But all three are below the national average of 87.8 per cent, itself the lowest ever recorded, and the government’s 95 per cent target.

The QEH last reached the figure in August last year, while Hinchingbrooke and Peterborough hit it in September and December respectively.