The 2015 winter waiting crisis at St. Peter's;as it happened.

Friday, 30 January 2015

The winter waiting crisis at St. Peter's; as it happened.

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Yet another waiting times crisis at St. Peter's Accident and Emergency.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise – St. Peter’s Accident and Emergency had to announce a ‘Major Emergency’ on 5th January 2015.

It shouldn’t be a surprise because demand for A and E rises every winter, there is an epdemic of a ‘Killer Flu’ that isn’t stopped by flu injections this year and most importantly….they weren’t keeping to the 4 hour waiting time limit in the summer.

The result? cancelled planned operations which can be catastrophic for the people concerned.

The problem? Too many staff cutbacks which means not enough general wards in winter so people in A and E can't be moved out quickly enough.

Ashford and St Peter's emergency to last at least 24 hours (From Surrey Comet) 


 First published Tuesday 6 January 2015  in News  

 by Ellie Cambridge, Reporter


Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has struggled to keep up with the demand this week, declaring a major incident that is likely to last for at least the next 24 hours and warning people to stay away from accident and emergency unless it is a real emergency.


This comes as data for England was published today by the NHS for the week ending December 28. Christmas is traditionally a busy time for hospitals and this data showed the trust had not met the Government target of seeing 95 per cent of admissions to A&E in four hours, having seen 85.6 per cent in four hours.


The number of patients spending between four and 12 hours waiting to be admittedin that week were 88.


Country-wide figures showed A&E departments had flagged under huge demand, seeing the worst national performance for 10 years.


A spokesman for the trust said: “Declaring a major incident (which we did at the weekend) allows us to mobilise additional staff and take a more targeted approach in how we manage outpatient clinics and planned operations and this is

resulting in an improving situation [today January 6] within our hospitals.”


An urgent message issued by the trust yesterday continued today as it faced “unprecedented demand” and needs to prioritise their most urgent patients.


In a statement online, it said: “We are currently under severe pressure - please don’t come to A&E unless you are a real emergency.


“Non-emergency patients are likely to have an extremely long wait and will be taking staff away from caring for patients who need emergency or lifesaving care.” Some appointments were cancelled on January 5 with patients affected called and informed.


No appointments were cancelled today.


Chief executive Suzanne Rankin said: “We expect to remain at major incident status for at least the next 24 hours to allow the actions we are taking to take full effect.


“I would like to praise and thank colleagues in the hospital who have been working extremely hard on behalf of patients to meet this demand.”


Other trusts throughout the country have faced similar difficulties, with hospitals in north Yorkshire, Staffordshire and Gloucestershire struggling to cope with the demand and declaring a major incident.

Monday, 12 January 2015 

Ashford and St. Peter's Accident and Emergency - tenth worst waiting times in the country?

I haven’t been so well recently so when the NHS figures for Accident and Emergency waiting times came out I wasn’t really up to analysing them the way I used to.

However, this last quarter has produced the worst NHS waiting times for 10 years – even though the Tories reduced the requirement from 97% of patients to be dealt with within 4 hours under labour to only 95% now.

Then again, inside the national figures are some real local problems and here we have one of the worst performances in the country.

Here are the 10 worst performing trusts – out of 140 of them;

10 worst performing hospitals for A&E waiting times - ITV News 

  ITV Report

  6 January 2015 at 1:53pm 


10 worst performing hospitals for A&E waiting times


NHS England announced A&E departments have the worst waiting times for 10 years.

See which hospitals performed worst:


  Worst;           Cambridge University Hospital Trust: 75.2%

  2nd Worst;    Medway NHS Foundation Trust: 79%

 3rd worst;     Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospital Trust: 80.5%

4th Worst;  University Hospitals Of North Midlands NHS Trust: 80.6%

5th Worst;  Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust: 81.7%

6th Worst;  North Bristol NHS Trust: 82.7%

7th Worst;  Colchester Hospital NHS Trust/Brighton and Sussex NHS Trust: 83.4%

8th Worst;  Peterborough and Stamford Hospital NHS Trust - 83.7%

9th Worst  University Hospital Southampton NHS Trust - 84%

10th Worst;  Ashford and St Peters Hospital NHS Trust - 84.6%

I’m grateful that ITV did the work for me because it is important to see that Ashford and St. Peter’s is the 10th worst A and E in the country – not least because they sent me home for a week with a broken ankle.

But I wasn’t happy with those figures. In the past (it’s on my ‘Pages’ column to be found on the right hand side of this Blog) I’ve shown how the figures have been distorted by Ashford and St. Peters.

Here are the figures to be found in The Guardian newspapers ‘Data pages’;

Major A and E                      All A and E             % Type 1 seen in          All A and E

attendances Type 1                                            4 hours or less             seen in 4 hours or less

1992                                        2248                        71-80%                                  75.0%


According to these figures the trust’s Accident and Emergency department is up there (or down there, I suppose) with the very worst.

Only 75% were seen within the statutory requirement of 4 hours – or only 71% of the really serious cases.

That’s appalling. How do they do it?

The  national NHS figures include the Ashford Walk-in centre which sees patients who would never go to A and E and can be dealt with really quickly. So, when I needed my dressing changed I went to see a nurse there - no A and E would have seen me for that.

Oh dear, I suppose I may have to take a closer look at these terrible figures one of these days.



Accident and Emergency at St. Peter's Hospital, Chertsey - Week ending 4th January 2015 figures.

OK, so I finally got my act together and downloaded the NHS England figures for patients waiting times at Accident and Emergency. This is were the rules state that from arrival at hospital, you should wait no longer than 4 hours to be either admitted or discharged.

Hospitals have to provide figures because they are required to keep to a maximum wait of 4 hours (think about it – that’s a long time).

Anyway here are the figures for Ashford and St. Peters Accident and Emergency for week ending 4th January 2015. There now appears to be a separate listing for the Ashford Walk in Centre, so this is just A and E.

During that week, the A and E at St. Peter’s saw 1830 patients of whom 1605 were the most serious Type 1 while 225 were minor injuries classed as Type 3.

Of the Type 3 minor injuries only 72-2% were seen within the 4 hours limit.

Much more seriously, of the Type 1 serious injuries only 68-2% were seen in less than 4 hours.

The national requirement is 95% reduced from 97% under the last Labour government.

They are poor figures but when you look at the other 140 trusts – The type 1 serious injury waiting times for St. Peter's are joint 13th worst in the country while for Type 3 injuries they are 11th worst.

One week, of course, can be a blip.

Except that I’ve been following this story for a while now (well over a year) and if I was able to spot it back then there is no reason Ashford and St. Peter’s NHS Trust should have been able to do something about it by now.


Sunday, 18 January 2015

The waiting time crisis at St.Peter's Hospital, Chertsey continues.

The latest figures for waiting times atg Ashford and St. Peter’s Hospitals are now out covering for week ending 11th January 2015.

It is probably no surprise that despite a slight improvement, the figures are still far below the Government’s requirement that 95% of patients at Accident and Emergency departments are admitted or discharged within 4 hours.

There were 1852 patients seen at St. Peter’s but only 78.9% of the most serious cases were seen with in 4 hours while for all cases (including less serious ones) only 82.1% were seen within the time limit.

Why is this happening?

Not enough staff, inadequate organisation and triage and the perennial problem that there aren’t enough beds (because there aren’t enough nurses) so that admissions can’t be taken out of A and E and into beds for treatment quickly enough.

Just waiting for the Flu season and the cold weather to end isn’t good enough.

Still watching - the latest waiting times figures are out. 25th January 2015

I’m still watching the waiting time statistics for the Accident and Emergency department at St. Peter’s hospital, Chertsey.

Like many other A and E’s, they have been missing their targets over this tough winter.

Except that at Christmas St. Peter's had to declare an emergency and bring in some fairly drastic measures to try to deal with the problem.

And it was already going on for much of 2014, as I’ve been recording on this Blog.

The government target is that 95% of patients should be seen and admitted or discharged in less than 4 hours.

The figures for week ending 18th January 2015 are now out.

Ashford and St. Peter’s are still missing their target;

Only 93.8% of patients were seen within the time limit while of the most serious cases only 92.8% were seen in time.

It doesn’t make pretty reading and the bare statistics hide the very human situation that people are hanging about in fear and pain instead of being seen when they should have been.

It also hides another story – in order to try to reduce waiting times, planned operations will have been cancelled to free up beds.
Neil Harris
(a don't stop till you drop production)

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