A&E at QA Hospital is fifth-worst for reaching four-hour target

ALMOST a third of patients using the A&E department at Queen Alexandra Hospital are waiting longer than four hours to be seen, treated or discharged.

Friday, 9th December 2016, 6:35 am
Updated Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 1:56 pm
The accident and emergency department at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham

The latest figures revealed by the NHS yesterday show the emergency department in Cosham is fifth worst in the country.

Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust (PHT), which runs QA, only reached the four-hour government target for 69.3 per cent of patients in October.

A total of 12,176 people attended A&E, which works out as an average of 392 people a day.

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As reported in The News, in September 74.3 per cent of patients were seen, treated or discharged within four hours. It made the hospital the 17th-worst trust in the country at the time.

October is the first time PHT has dropped below 70 per cent since April this year when the figure stood at 69.1 per cent.

The national target is 95 per cent, which just eight trusts reached in October.

Previously a spokeswoman from PHT told The News it had seen a ‘marked and significant increase’ in attendances.

She added: ‘We ensure our most urgent patients are seen first and we work closely with South Central Ambulance Service and other health and social partners across the healthcare system to ensure the emergency department is there for people with serious, life-threatening conditions.’

As reported at the end of last month Dr Rob Haigh, the executive director for the emergency care pathway at the Cosham hospital, wants to see most patients admitted into A&E seen, treated or discharged within the four hours.

He said: ‘I want to see us reach 85 per cent and I think it can be done.

‘Hardly any trusts across the country are reaching the 95 per cent target and, looking at where we are at now, 85 per cent is more realistic.’

A number of schemes have been introduced to help reach this target.

They include setting up a 72-hour short-stay unit for people attending A&E but who do not need to stay in hospital for long periods of time and creating a Frailty Interface Team to see elderly people who are coming the doors of the emergency department quickly.

A&E staff are also working with GPs and emergency practitioners.