Hundreds of readers have had their say on whether or not people should be treated at the Queen Alexandra Hospital despite not being seriously enough injured to be there.
And an overwhelming majority said they thought people should turned away if the recommended treatment venue - a minor injuries unit or a GP surgery - was open.
We asked: Should people with minor injuries be turned away from the QA Hospital’s A&E if a recommended alternative place of treatment is open? Of the 665 people who responded, 88 per cent said yes and 12 per cent no
The poll was launched last Sunday after we reported that one in seven people attending the accident and emergency department should under NHS guidelines have instead have gone to a minor injuries unit or a GP.
The NHS says A&E is not the right place to go for treatment for bruises, contusions and abrasions, muscle injuries, sprains or ligament injuries and lacerations, bites or incised wounds.
But the continued stream of minor injuries is putting extra pressure on Portsmouth’s main hospital, as all are given necessary treatment once they have arrived.
So should people be simply turned away if a minor injuries unit or GP surgery is still open? Please cast your vote and, if you wish, leave a comment on this story or on the link on our Facebook page.
Here are some of the comments we received on our Facebook page:-
Wayne Smeeton: QA is a fantastic hospital and ALL staff are working flat out. A&E is being used as a doctor’s surgery and this is the trouble with time wasters.
Christopher Bowen: People still have to be assessed to establish whether or not an injury is minor or not. How many times do we stories about people sent away from hospitals because they had an apparently minor conditions only for it to turn out to be a lot more serious?
Vicky Pearce: I was there the other week with my son for breathing problems and someone bought their child in who was constipated! Seriously! They gave a prescription for senna and sent them on their way. The fact is they still had to waste time (about 30 mins) dealing with this when they could have gone to pharmacist or out of hours doctor instead! Complete time waster!
Tracy Bell: Maybe the word ‘accident’ should be removed and just leave ‘Emergency’? An accident can be minor or serious of course, but the serious cases would stay obviously if it was classed as an emergency?
Rosemary Turner: It’s not so much people with minor injuries who are causing the problem but people with drink, drug and mental health issues. The staff are brilliant.
Viv Collins: Well I think it’s shocking what people go down there for to be honest. I went down with my son last week with a fractured hand and there was a woman there because her child had earache! The child was jumping around like a flea on a dog’s back
Alex James Whitelock: I’d you are not at risk of dying or have a broken bones or bleeding from a wound then you should not be at the hospital. Start charging people for things that could have been dealt with by the doctors or practice nurses
Jackie Street: Underfunding mis-sold as underperforming once again! When will people realise how underfunded the NHS is instead of blaming it on the wrong sort of patients!!!
Peter Blake: I had great treatment there but problems started in the area with the closing of a perfectly good A&E at Haslar Hospital the whole thing has escalated from then now they are proposing more hospital cuts in the name of better treatment! Get real listen to the public not some so called experts the consequences will only get worse. The staff at QA hospital are great under the circumstances.
Helen Lowe: My husband was admitted with sepsis, a life threatening condition. The staff, particularly the young doctor who admitted him, were amazing, despite people with conditions that could have been treated at a pharmacy shouting the odds about having to wait.
Rachel Cussell: The minor injury unit could do with being open longer hours, I needed stitches to my head last year and I would have gone to St Mary’s but it wasn’t open , so had no choice but to use A&E.
Frances Jacobs: If you can walk, talk and are not in severe pain then go somewhere else! I have 4 kids and always use 111 or a walk in centre if gp is closed. Suspect broken limb.... go to walk in centre. They can deal with that! Bumped your head but can still strung a sentence together and haven’t thrown up or been unconscious. ...... go to walk in centre!
Sarah Powell: I don’t understand why people want to rush off to sit for 6 hours in A&E.
I’d rather go to the MIU as you’re seen much quicker! A&E is for seriously ill or injured. Going there with a sprained ankle or sore throat is just taking time from those who really need to be there!!
Olive Smith: There must be a way to sort the genuine patients from the drunks and malingerers.
Keith Taylor: An idea.. Have a GP Surgery close to A&E. Have a senior person assess the illness/injury & then direct them to the correct door, A&E or GP Surgery. Ever seen M*A*S*H?