Waiting times improving at A&E in Gloucestershire
WAITING times at emergency departments in Gloucestershire's biggest hospitals have improved following action by trusts.
The latest figures for June show 97.1 per cent of A&E patients have been dealt with within four hours at Gloucestershire Royal and Cheltenham General hospitals.
It puts them above the national 95 per cent target.
The news comes after the trust which runs the hospitals came under fire from health watchdog Monitor in May for failing to hit the target consistently over the last two-and-half years. Last financial year the trust achieved an average of 92.8 per cent.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
The independent regulator used its powers to step in and order Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to shape up.
An external Emergency Care Intensive Support Team (ECIST) was asked by the trust to step in to help.
The latest improvement comes in the face of a surge in emergency admissions at both hospitals. In April and May, there were 7,848 admissions, up nine per cent on the same time last year.
Maggie Arnold, the trust's emergency care programme director, said work had also led to fewer ambulances being held up when handing over patients.
She said: "It's about changing the culture and understanding it's not acceptable for patients to be in the ambulance or in a corridor outside A&E. It has only been a few weeks but there has been a change. It's everybody understanding what we are doing."
A detailed action plan is being followed at the hospitals. Changes include employing new emergency department nurses and training others up as emergency nurse practitioners.
This means they can see, treat and discharge suitable patients, who otherwise would have to wait to see a doctor.
More equipment has been brought in, including new electrocardiograms, blood pressure kits and trolleys.
New surgical assessment units have also been created. When a patient in triage has a surgical problem, such as abdominal pain, they are taken straight to the new unit, where they are seen by a senior decision maker who specialises in surgery.
Elsewhere in the hospital, an effort is being made to discharge patients from wards earlier in the day and services in the community are being warned sooner when they are needed.