Missed hospital appointments 'cost NHS 1bn a year'

Missed hospital appointments 'cost NHS 1bn a year'

The hospital said it was seeing a higher than normal number of patients, a greater number of patients whose transfer of care to another health organisation is delayed, and delays within the hospital itself due to staffing and service issues.

The chief executive of the North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the hospital, has said that due to the enormous pressure that staff are facing, they are having to delay non-urgent elective operations.

In November, 77.7 per cent of patients at Peterborough City Hospital's Emergency Department were being treated inside four hours.

"If you do become unwell and need medical help fast but it's not a 999 emergency, call NHS 111 for clinical advice, assessment and for direction to the most appropriate services for treatment".

"I am extremely proud of the outstanding service they provide and can not thank colleagues enough for their dedication, additional hours worked and the care they provide to each other, as well as our patients, when the going gets tough".

The unusual measure has been taken to ease pressure on overstretched hospital staff who are already dealing with a spike in winter flu cases.

That is why we are making these further recommendations today.

Worthing and St Richard's Hospitals remain extremely busy and following the busiest Christmas and New Year period our staff have ever experienced.

Thousands of patients face long delays as many operations have been postponed amid unprecedented demand. "What is different this year compared to last year is that last year we had a lot of operations cancelled at the last minute, a lot of people were called up the day before their operation and told, 'I'm sorry, it can't go ahead'".

Trudie Davies, director of operations for hospital services at the trust, said: "We are continually risk assessing capacity to ensure that we are able to safely treat both acute and elective patients".

Health secretary Shona Robison said: "Our NHS and community health service do a fantastic job all year round but there is no doubt that winter can bring additional demands, and I'd like to thank them once again for the dedication they have shown during this busy winter period".

There were also early indications of an increasing number of cases of flu and some a rise in the severity of illness among patients arriving at accident and emergency departments.

Mrs Griffiths said: "Our teams have worked extraordinarily hard this Christmas and New Year and, despite the very challenging circumstances, they have done it, yet again, with exemplary skill, kindness and compassion".

"Patients who spend many hours on a trolley - and these are often elderly patients - they are the sickest patients in our department".