Hundreds of patients forced to wait in ambulances
HUNDREDS of patients are being forced to wait in ambulances outside hospitals, latest figures reveal.
The number of ambulance handovers delayed by more than 20 minutes to Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and Cheltenham General Hospital is above target with high admissions levels being blamed.
Delays decreased in August of this year after rising in June and July, but the number of patients left waiting was still above the monthly target of 174. Since April, there have been 1,339 delays. The target for the same period was 870.
Maggie Arnold, emergency care programme director at Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "Our emergency admissions teams work hard to enable ambulance crews to hand over the care of their patients quickly.
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"We have seen high levels of emergency admissions this year, combined with pressures from delayed transfers of care which mean it can take longer than we would like to discharge patients and for beds to become available for new admissions.
"We work daily with our colleagues in the ambulance service and with those across the health and social care community to ensure we are all working together to enable the flow of patients."