PAH: Over 10,000 visit Accident and Emergency in June

Health / Mon 12th Jul 2021 at 12:38pm

A&Es in Essex saw record numbers of people last month – as NHS leaders warn that the health service is experiencing “winter in summer”.

A huge spike in demand for non-Covid related urgent healthcare – combined with another surge in Covid cases – has led to unprecedented demand across England, according to the NHS Confederation.

A total of 34,265 people visited Mid and South Essex NHS Trust’s A&Es in June – the highest number since monthly records began in June 2015.

Numbers were 42 per cent higher than in June last year during lockdown.

Of those arriving in A&E this June, 87 per cent were admitted, discharged or transferred within four hours.

That was down from 90 per cent in May, and below the target of 95 per cent.

The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust in Harlow also saw record numbers in A&E, with 10,589 attendances in June. Of those 71.0 per cent waited less than four hours.

Dr Simon Walsh, deputy chair BMA consultants committee, said: “Seeing the extraordinary rise in the numbers of people going to emergency departments serves to reinforce the need for the Westminster Government to reconsider its plans to relax all Covid restrictions from July 19.

“Overcrowded emergency departments already cause harm, even without a pandemic, so it seems utterly illogical that the Westminster Government is pushing ahead with full easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

“When you add that to the news that there are now 5.3 million people on the waiting list, it’s vital that we keep infections down to reduce the pressure on the NHS as much as possible.”

Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, added: “A significant Covid surge this summer will place even more strain on an urgent care system struggling to cope, and this will have a direct and immediate impact on the care the NHS can provide to patients.

“Many of our organisations are running far too hot and are much busier than they have historically been at this time of year. Our staff are also exhausted after a gruelling 18 months, yet a huge demand for healthcare has left the NHS buckling under the strain of running a winter-like service in summer.

“The NHS has been working at full pelt to reinstate services and get patients back through its doors as quickly as possible, with operations and other activity at 90 per cent of pre-pandemic levels.

“However, there is growing concern among NHS leaders that the rapidly rising demand for urgent and emergency care will threaten to slow down their attempts to recover the huge and rising elective care backlog.”

NHS England figures for May show progress was being made on waiting lists and cancer care. Patients waiting longer than 18 weeks for elective care dropped by more than 80,000 in May.

While those waiting more than a year fell by 50,000 for the second month in a row.

Meanwhile, the number of people getting checked for cancer continues to be high and above pre-pandemic levels with 207,188 people getting checked in May – over 100,000 more than in the same month last year.

Stephen Powis, NHS medical director professor, said: “Despite the huge disruption we have seen to care caused by the pandemic and the more than 405,000 Covid patients in our hospitals over the last 15 months, it is reassuring to see in today’s figures significant reductions in waits for routine operations, and for the first time this year, a reduction in the number of patients waiting more than 18 weeks for treatment.

“All the while, NHS staff have dealt with rising numbers of A&E attendances while continuing to roll out the NHS Covid Vaccination Programme and I would urge anyone who needs a routine operation to come forward, and anyone who needs urgent care, to go to NHS 111 Online or call 111 so that the best option for you can be determined.”

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5 Comments for PAH: Over 10,000 visit Accident and Emergency in June:

J Paffett
2021-07-12 13:37:18

Maybe the GPs should start seeing patients again. Patients need to be seen, not have telephone conversations. Maybe that’s why so many are attending A&E, for face to face diagnosis. Just a thought.

2021-07-12 20:18:23

Totally agree with J Paffett. 60 thousand people attended Wembley, but I can't see my doctor at a distance of 2 metres. They think they can diagnose over the phone from some less than clear phone picture. I've had an ongoing problem since last October and still not been physically seen by anyone.

2021-07-13 00:58:09

Honestly I don’t understand how these Nhs staff cope they are amazing is al I can say I been in and out hospital before during and after all this lockdown and in a&e recent over night with Covid they are always 100% the gp are a joke only doing telephone appointment and half the time sending everyone to a&e maybe actually start seeing patients who actually need to be seen my 3 kids was ill twice tonsillitis and strep throat and ear infections they wasn’t going to treat them cause they wouldn’t see face to face so basically said they need to be seen cause the school and cause I ain’t sitting up hospital if they can treat them in end he prescribed them antibiotics didn’t even offer to see them it’s a joke really

2021-07-13 11:32:59

Agree with the above I know of three experiences where people who were not seen by local GP and were referred to A&E. It's time for face to face GP visitors again, maybe not for all. However, saying you can't due to risk and pushing to A&E just puts their doctors at risk. No logic to it.

2021-07-13 22:58:22

Let the doctors see the patient in person with social distancing rules. In the hospital when medical professionals(nurses, Jr. docs,consultants etc:) are taking risk treating the patients. Let the GP take the same risk as well. Also, if we request for a GP appointment at least the GP should initiate the call depending upon the severity of the sickness/an ongoing health problem. Most of the time it is the Nurse who calls the patient. Doctors are no where to be seen. It's time for a change. 19/July is not too far. Patient care first Please!!

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