Emergency patients forced to wait outside in ambulances in East Lancashire

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Emergency patients forced to wait outside in ambulances in East Lancashire Emergency patients forced to wait outside in ambulances in East Lancashire

DOZENS of patients have been forced to wait ‘too long’ in ambulances before being admitted to East Lancashire’s emergency ward.

NHS guidance recommends patients should wait in ambulances for no longer than 15 minutes, while delays of more than 30 minutes can lead to fines.

In the most recent national figures, for the week to December 4, there were 73 ‘queued ambulances’ at the Royal Blackburn Hospital, compared to the national average of 31.

Last week, the Lancashire Telegraph revealed how 1,000 patients were forced to wait more than four hours after arriving at the hospital for emergency care.

The ambulance figures again highlight how staff are struggling to cope.

Russ McLean, chairman of the Pennine lancashire Patient Voices Group, said: “There must be such a lack of staff in the emergency department that paramedics are unable to hand over to anyone.

“It can be highly distressing for emergency patients, especially the elderly, to be left waiting in an ambulance because the emergency ward is full.”

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust did not respond in time for our deadline, but Gill Rose, interim divisional general manager of medicine, said last week that delays in the emergency department have mainly happened when a large number of patients arrived within a short period of time.

The trust says that it is also planing to create more ‘ambulatory care’ space at the Royal Blackburn, which will enable patients who come in as an emergency to be treated in an outpatient setting without the need for an overnight stay in hospital.

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1:52pm Tue 10 Dec 13

vicn1956 says...

Yesterday my father-in-law aged 82 waited 8 hours for a bed. He had nothing to eat or drink from lunchtime until we left him at 1.20am and was not offered anything! (He had his accident at 3.00pm. We first went to Accy Vic and was told he needed to go to the R.B.Hospital. We took him in the car at 5.15pm). It was heaving. Eventually some gave up and went home. We darent' as he'd had a head injury.
The overworked staff were wonderful. One had worked all night without a break of any kind. The managers need to spend time in A+E at all hours of the day and speak in confidence off the record 1 to 1 with all staff to find out what it is like. Perhaps they will then stop coming out with platitudes trying to make things appear better than they are.
As a member of staff said- the managers have nice 9-5 jobs and are at home with their families.
Yesterday my father-in-law aged 82 waited 8 hours for a bed. He had nothing to eat or drink from lunchtime until we left him at 1.20am and was not offered anything! (He had his accident at 3.00pm. We first went to Accy Vic and was told he needed to go to the R.B.Hospital. We took him in the car at 5.15pm). It was heaving. Eventually some gave up and went home. We darent' as he'd had a head injury. The overworked staff were wonderful. One had worked all night without a break of any kind. The managers need to spend time in A+E at all hours of the day and speak in confidence off the record 1 to 1 with all staff to find out what it is like. Perhaps they will then stop coming out with platitudes trying to make things appear better than they are. As a member of staff said- the managers have nice 9-5 jobs and are at home with their families. vicn1956

4:45pm Tue 10 Dec 13

cutthebull says...

It's a disgrace what is happening in A&E nurses quitting left right & centre, agency staff doing very limited work on triple the normal staffs wage. Normal staff refusing to do extra because they get paid less than their normal rate. Queues of 10+ ambulances at a time & 1 nurse to triage. 1 nurse to triage the 'walking' wounded who often walk in with things far more serious than what should be classed as walking. Staff physically cannot help each other because they cannot deal with their own workload. Higher management coming down shouting about targets & why the patient hasn't been moved, dealt with, the fact that they've been on the corridor/waiting room for 2hrs + before they came into your room means nothing. Staff are exhausted not getting breaks, don't even have time to go to toilet, but that doesn't matter as it's not as though they has time to get a drink. Infection control stopped staff having bottles of water/ pop on shop floor for staff. Staff keeping sugar sweets in their pocket & eating them on the sly to stop their own blood sugars dropping & passing out. Public getting angry at us for not seeing them quick enough or getting their relative a bed, room etc. staff stress levels are through the roof & morale is at it's lowest. Staff feel trapped, there's no training & when there is it's for the ones who's face fits not the ones who work hard. Staff try their best but unfortunately with the amount of people coming through the door, having no beds left in the hospital & poor staffing levels that is just not good enough. It's horrible situation staff find themselves in & each one of them fears for the lack of care for their patients. Trust me staff are having sleepless days/nights about what's happening there & they are fearing for their careers knowing that they are going to miss something & serious harm will happen. Nurses are not paid enough for that responsibility but lucky for the public they don't do it for the money.
It's a disgrace what is happening in A&E nurses quitting left right & centre, agency staff doing very limited work on triple the normal staffs wage. Normal staff refusing to do extra because they get paid less than their normal rate. Queues of 10+ ambulances at a time & 1 nurse to triage. 1 nurse to triage the 'walking' wounded who often walk in with things far more serious than what should be classed as walking. Staff physically cannot help each other because they cannot deal with their own workload. Higher management coming down shouting about targets & why the patient hasn't been moved, dealt with, the fact that they've been on the corridor/waiting room for 2hrs + before they came into your room means nothing. Staff are exhausted not getting breaks, don't even have time to go to toilet, but that doesn't matter as it's not as though they has time to get a drink. Infection control stopped staff having bottles of water/ pop on shop floor for staff. Staff keeping sugar sweets in their pocket & eating them on the sly to stop their own blood sugars dropping & passing out. Public getting angry at us for not seeing them quick enough or getting their relative a bed, room etc. staff stress levels are through the roof & morale is at it's lowest. Staff feel trapped, there's no training & when there is it's for the ones who's face fits not the ones who work hard. Staff try their best but unfortunately with the amount of people coming through the door, having no beds left in the hospital & poor staffing levels that is just not good enough. It's horrible situation staff find themselves in & each one of them fears for the lack of care for their patients. Trust me staff are having sleepless days/nights about what's happening there & they are fearing for their careers knowing that they are going to miss something & serious harm will happen. Nurses are not paid enough for that responsibility but lucky for the public they don't do it for the money. cutthebull

10:26am Wed 11 Dec 13

vicn1956 says...

They mustn't be doing it for the money!
Most will stick at it because they want to help others but how many will feel trapped because of mortgages/families to support?
They mustn't be doing it for the money! Most will stick at it because they want to help others but how many will feel trapped because of mortgages/families to support? vicn1956

10:52am Wed 11 Dec 13

kapalski says...

Blah Blah Blah havent we heard all this before? Stop blaming this on the number of patients! This happens all the time and every year as you keep reminding everyone! Get your dam act together and staff your hospital accordingley. Saving money at the expense of life is not an acceptable answer is it. How would the management feel if it was their loved one that was being treated this way, oh thats right, it wouldnt happen would it!!

Get a grip of yourselves and stop blaming the people of lancashire, it is your job to staff your hospital and treat people with dignity and respect, something that has been lost for a while it appears!

Your that short staffed, why are management not rolling their sleeves up and cracking on helping their staff?? Beneath your pay scale is it??

I am still waiting for the report by LT to say Schram has stepped down aswell, then things may progress in the direction it needs!!
Blah Blah Blah havent we heard all this before? Stop blaming this on the number of patients! This happens all the time and every year as you keep reminding everyone! Get your dam act together and staff your hospital accordingley. Saving money at the expense of life is not an acceptable answer is it. How would the management feel if it was their loved one that was being treated this way, oh thats right, it wouldnt happen would it!! Get a grip of yourselves and stop blaming the people of lancashire, it is your job to staff your hospital and treat people with dignity and respect, something that has been lost for a while it appears! Your that short staffed, why are management not rolling their sleeves up and cracking on helping their staff?? Beneath your pay scale is it?? I am still waiting for the report by LT to say Schram has stepped down aswell, then things may progress in the direction it needs!! kapalski

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