Tag Archives: A&E

Which homicidal Tory idiot doesn’t understand why you CAN’T book a place in Accident & Emergency?

Tory stupidity: you can’t book a place in A&E because you don’t know when you’ll be involved in an accident, or when an emergency will arise. The best thing to do is ignore this new rule completely and demand your right to treatment.

Yes, you read the headline right: the Tories want to make hospital A&E departments ‘booking only’ by December.

According to The Times (it’s behind a paywall but you can get the sense of it from the preview:

Plans for patients to “call first” and book into A&E via NHS 111 will be implemented before December, NHS bosses were told yesterday.

A joint board meeting of NHS England and NHS Improvement was told that new emergency care standards designed to replace the four-hour waiting time target would also be in place before winter.

The plans were described as a “profound change” by Lord Prior of Brampton, chairman of NHS England. Hospitals will be asked to adapt “rapidly” to the measures, which have yet to be finalised, and make improvements as they learn how they work in practice during autumn, board papers said.

So it seems this “Lord Prior of Brampton” is the airhead who thinks you can book A&E time for events you have no reason to expect.

The thinking behind the change is clear: if the only way into A&E is by booking a place, then there won’t be any waiting times and the Tory government will be spared the embarrassment of being shown to have worsened NHS care.

That could be particularly important – for public relations, but not for public health – at a time when hospitals are otherwise likely to be overloaded with Covid-19 patients, people with regular flu, and other emergency demands.

And I suppose people who die at home because they cannot get a slot won’t be counted.

But isn’t the NHS supposed to consult the public on major changes like this? Aren’t they illegal if that doesn’t happen?

My advice: ignore this new rule.

The National Health Service exists to provide health care, free at the point of use, for every UK citizen, when they need it – not when it’s convenient for Tory politicians.

Source: Patients will have to book a spot at A&E by autumn | News | The Times

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Coronavirus: Tories push on with A&E closures that ‘will only result in death’

This takes Tory ignorance to new homicidal levels.

It seems the Conservative government is pressing ahead with the closures of Accident and Emergency departments and intensive care units in hospitals across London (the rest of the UK isn’t mentioned) despite the fact that the UK is in the grip of the coronavirus pandemic.

The likely result is summed up by GMB union organiser Helen O’Connor, who said: “The removal of these services at existing major acute hospitals will only result in death.”

That’s even though the Tories are planning to open a special Covid-19 hospital in the Excel Centre in east London to care for an additional 4,000 patients afflicted with the disease.

It seems these lunatic toffs really don’t have a clue what they’re doing or what it signifies for the fight against the virus.

Source: Government is pressing ahead with A&E closures despite Covid-19 – LabourList

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Tory response to NHS waiting time failure: HIDE THE EVIDENCE

This was a corridor in an English hospital’s Accident & Emergency department in early 2017 – and now the situation is worse.

Tory Health Secretary Matt Hancock has admitted not only that he can’t fix the NHS waiting time crisis – he won’t even bother to try.

Instead, it seems he’ll get rid of the four-hour target for patients to be seen. In other words, he’ll hide the evidence.

Of course he’ll say it’s only a coincidence that the proportion of patients attending A&E who were seen within the four-hour limit has been falling steadily since the Tories took over government in 2010.

Before then, under Labour, it was well within the target of 95 per cent.

And I’m sure he’ll say it’s also just a coincidence that attendances at A&E last month had increased by 400,000 since 2010.

It’s nothing to do with the return of so-called “Victorian diseases” brought by the Tory “starve the poor” policies of 2010 onwards – obviously. And it’s nothing to do with the increased health problems faced by benefit claimants who the Tories (wrongly) said could live on less.

And if you believe that, you’re stupid and gullible enough to deserve the pathetic service you’re getting.

You probably even believe Hancock when he says the NHS is getting its biggest cash injection ever, when in real terms the £33.9 billion promised is nowhere near the biggest, once inflation has been taken into account.

One person who isn’t going to be gulled is Professor Taj Hassan, president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, who said last year: “In our expert opinion scrapping the four-hour target will have a near-catastrophic impact on patient safety.”

As a reader of Vox Political, I’m willing to bet that you are neither gullible nor stupid.

So, who do you believe?

Matt Hancock has signalled that four-hour waiting targets for A&E are likely to be scrapped for the NHS in England after the worst figures on record this winter.

The health secretary said it would be better if targets were “clinically appropriate” and the “right targets”, as he defended the NHS’s failure to meet the standard that 95% of patients attending A&E should be admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours.

The target was put under review by Theresa May’s government and the NHS unveiled plans last March to pilot changes that would prioritise patients with serious conditions while patients with minor problems could wait longer than four hours.

A decision about the flagship four-hour target is due to be taken by NHS England in the coming months.

Source: Matt Hancock signals A&E waiting targets likely to be scrapped | Society | The Guardian

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An appointments system for Accident & Emergency is the stupidest NHS idea yet

The whole point of Accident & Emergency is that people don’t need appointments to be seen.

A person who has just become the victim of a life-threatening injury, illness or condition isn’t going to have time to wait around until a doctor is ready to see them.

And the fact that this is being proposed to save face, for a service whose lack of money means it isn’t hitting targets is the biggest insult of all.

Yes, the National Health Service needs major changes.

They are a change of leaders – and a change of government.

Patients could have to start booking appointments in A&E units, and those with only minor ailments wait many hours before they are seen, under a proposed shakeup of NHS targets.

NHS England chiefs are examining whether to relax the longstanding obligation to see 95% of A&E patients within four hours.

They are also under growing pressure from hospital bosses to ease another key NHS waiting time target – the duty to give patients non-urgent surgery within 18 weeks of being referred by their GP.

Source: NHS proposes A&E appointments system in targets shakeup | Society | The Guardian

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NHS bosses ordered trusts: Lie to the public about scale of winter crisis – claim

[Image: Science Photo Library.]

It seems we have all been deceived, and the scale of the crisis facing emergency medicine may be greater than first thought.

Emails from NHS Improvement told Trusts to boost their treatment figures by including data from walk-in centres, in conflict with guidance issued by NHS England in 2015.

It means trusts’ performance since last October, when the first email was sent, may have been artificially inflated.

The UK Statistics Authority has demanded an explanation.

Crucially, This Writer wants to know who ordered the changes – and why.

NHS hospital trusts in England may have to recalculate A&E performance figures from last October onwards.

The UK Statistics Authority has told NHS England to explain changes to the recording of A&E data.

It says the changes – highlighted by BBC News – could have left people reaching “misleading conclusions”.

They raise questions over some trusts’ performance on the highest profile NHS performance target – that patients in A&E are seen within four hours.

The official target requires 95% of patients to be treated, assessed or discharged within four hours, a figure the NHS has failed to meet since July 2015.

A hospital trust’s performance figures include the main accident and emergency department (known as Type 1) and minor injuries or care centres (known as Type 3).

These centres tend to see and treat patients a lot more quickly than those needing emergency care.

Data in these clinics tends to pull up the overall performance of a trust. This is confirmed by the Royal College of Emergency Medicine.

The BBC has seen emails sent by NHS Improvement, the body responsible for overseeing trusts, in October last year.

The implication is that including these centres would help improve overall performance.

This, and another email sent later in October by NHS Improvement, was seen by trusts as a request to add in data from walk-in centres not run by them and not on hospital grounds.

This is in direct conflict with clear guidance issued in November 2015 by NHS England, which says walk-in centre data can be included only if the trust has clinical responsibility for the service or if it co-located on the trust’s grounds.

Source: A&E stats may have to be recalculated


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This year’s NHS crisis has begun as patients experience sharp rising in A&E waiting times

The ambulance bay at Bristol Royal Infirmary [Image: Matt Cardy/Getty Images].

As Jeremy Corbyn put it, “This is completely unacceptable.

“Growing pressure on our NHS means more people waiting longer in ambulances and A&E departments having to divert more patients to other hospitals.”

Of course it is entirely in line with the claim that the Tories are trying to make the health service look incompetent in order to make a profit-making, privatised health system seem more attractive.

The minority Tory government may say it isn’t planning to sell off the NHS, but the recent announcement that the UK is holding private trade talks with the USA is a red flag to everybody who ever cared about the health service.

Of course, the real losers in this situation are the service users.

Growing numbers of patients taken to hospital by ambulance are having to wait an hour or more before they are handed over to A&E staff for treatment, NHS England figures show.

In the week to last Sunday, 17 December, one in seven such patients faced a delay of at least 30 minutes in the back of an ambulance or an area of the hospital where the crew look after them, up from one in eight the week before.

Hospitals are finding it impossible to stick to tough rules brought in for this winter by NHS England and NHS Improvement requiring that no patient should have to wait more than 15 minutes.

In a further sign of the extra pressure the NHS is under this winter, the number of times A&E units had to temporarily divert patients elsewhere because they could not cope with the demand for care rose from 25 the previous week to 30.

Source: NHS figures show sharp rise in patients waiting for A&E care | Society | The Guardian


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Jeremy Hunt’s plan to ease Accident & Emergency admissions might as well be murder

Jeremy Hunt has doctors on the rack [Cartoon: Mirror Online].

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt is another Tory MP who should face a Nuremberg-style show trial after we get a sane, Labour government back in office.

His plan to solve the A&E crisis, in which people have to wait many hours for treatment, is to force patients to seek referral from their GP first. But the average wait for a GP appointment is three weeks, as Mr Hunt knows perfectly well.

He’s the one who has poured the pressure on them.

And he doesn’t care. Watch this video, in which he shows absolutely no compassion for overworked doctors, even after being told several have taken their own lives because of his policies:

He sat there with a smirk on his face while listening to the facts – including mention of deaths – and then as good as admitted that he’s using the NHS to train staff for private health companies.

“We’ve made good progress on the medical school side but we need to do a lot better in terms of the retention side” means doctors and nurses are quitting, after qualification, to work elsewhere. Does he really mean that, considering he co-wrote a book demanding the privatisation of the NHS?

Plans to increase the number of doctors being trained won’t help the NHS keep them; better pay and working conditions are needed to achieve that.

He said he wants GPs to “do the work that we need general practice to do”. What work is that, exactly? Referring people to private health firms, rather than helping them on the NHS? You have to ask.

Meanwhile, the queues of patients mount up.

Of course, many are forced to attend A&E simply because they can’t get to see a GP in reasonable time. Forcing them back is simply compounding a problem that Jeremy Hunt has created.

He would put patients in a permanent loop, running back and forth between GP and A&E, and receiving treatment from neither.

Until when? People have already died because of Mr Hunt’s ideologically-motivated underfunding of both branches of the NHS.

His plan seems to be to force patients to wait for care until after the end of their lives – in the same way his colleague David Gauke wants benefit claimants to die before receiving state benefits.

Yet both patients and claimants have paid for these services already – through taxes, direct and indirect.

That’s why Tory ministers like Mr Hunt belong in court, on mass murder charges. They know the consequences of their policies and are implementing them anyway.


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NHS walk-in centres close – to INCREASE pressure on A&E departments

The walk-in centres in Bury and Prestwich will close but will remain as healthcare sites [Image: BBC].

You’d have to be an idiot to believe that closing NHS walk-in centres is about relieving pressure on hospital Accident and Emergency departments.

Walk-in centres were intended to relieve pressure on both GP practices and hospital A&E departments by providing treatment to people, without appointments (they could just walk in) on a range of illnesses and ailments.

The idea was to leave only real emergencies to Accident and Emergency departments.

But the Conservatives have been closing walk-in centres and we can all see the result: A humanitarian crisis in the English National Health Service that has led to several deaths and seriously compromised the system.

Now the BBC is reporting the closure of two more, with the doublespeak justification that is will “reduce hospital attendance and admissions”.

How is that supposed to happen? Without the walk-in centres, people in immediate need will have nowhere else to go!

I think we all know what is really behind this.

The local Clinical Commissioning Group is having to make budget cuts, so the service must suffer.

Meanwhile, Theresa May chatters on about “minor pressures” on the NHS while more patients suffer.

Two walk-in centres will close as part of a shake-up of urgent care to reduce hospital attendance and admissions.

The sites, in Bury and Prestwich in Greater Manchester, will shut so resources can be moved to NHS 111, GP surgeries and A&E departments.

Though popular, the service was deemed “confusing” and the changes are intended to direct patients to the “right care”.

Bury Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) approved the plan earlier.

However, protesters said the group had “ignored” their concerns.

More than 2,000 people signed a petition to save Moorgate Primary Care Centre and Prestwich Walk In Centre.

Source: Bury and Prestwich walk-in centre closures in care shake-up – BBC News

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#NHSCrisis: Keep reminding May the misery is her fault

Theresa May: In Prime Minister’s Questions last week, she was blaming older people for the crisis in the English NHS [Image: PA].


Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth is absolutely right: With no less than 66 out of 152 English hospital trusts in a state of emergency, it is unacceptable for Theresa May (or Jeremy Hunt) to pass the buck. Blame lies with them and their government.

Mr Ashworth’s points are damning:

Theresa May and her Government not only take no responsibility. She feels no shame and doesn’t seem to realise what’s happening to real people.

So she now considers it a “small number” when more than a quarter of patients are waiting over four hours in A&E.

She now considers it “acceptable” that hospitals have to convert gymnasiums into temporary wards and pensioners are trapped, waiting in cold ambulances.

Rather than action, her response is to try to water down the A&E target as if she believes that changing the goals in Whitehall will make any difference to someone waiting in anxiety on a trolley in a real A&E.

Yesterday she tried to blame family doctors.

Source: Theresa May is in denial and out of touch in her response to the crisis of the NHS, says Jonathan Ashworth

Today (January 15), Jeremy Corbyn outlined a few simple steps that would relieve the immediate pressure on the health service, providing breathing-room for long-term solutions to be found.

He said the Conservatives should cancel their plan to cut Corporation Tax and the higher rate of Income Tax. This would release £70 billion.

The money could be used to ensure there are enough beds for incoming patients and enough staff to treat them.

And plenty of money would be left over – certainly enough to provide £2 billion for improvements in the social care system.

Helen Stokes-Lampard, chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners, echoed Labour’s position on the NHS Crisis in an appearance on Peston on Sunday. She said: “You’re not cutting fat from the system; you’re cutting muscle. If you cut muscle, it won’t stand up anymore.”

This Writer could not agree more.

Theresa May, Jeremy Hunt and the Tories simply don’t have a leg to stand on.

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A&E, cancer and maternity units to close in major vandalism on NHS by Tories and their stooges

Prof Sir Bruce Keogh argues that centralising some types of medical care benefits patients. Does anybody accept that, in this context? [Image: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images].

Prof Sir Bruce Keogh argues that centralising some types of medical care benefits patients. Does anybody accept that, in this context? [Image: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images].


This is not an overhaul, because overhaul implies improvement. This is an act of vandalism on England’s life support machine.

You don’t close down a unit that could give valuable life-saving treatment to somebody – when it matters – and tell them to trek who-knows-how-many-miles down the road instead. They’ll be dead on arrival.

Sir Bruce Keogh can say whatever Jeremy Hunt tells him to, and I’ll call him a Tory stooge, because that’s what he is – and a dangerous liability to the health service, and the health of people across England.

How much more of this homicidal stupidity do we have to take?

When do the Tories cross the line?

Do we have to wait until people start to die – after these reckless and irresponsible plans are put into action and the health service cut beyond its ability to cope?

Or should the people who actually do the work in the health service just say enough is enough and refuse to go through with it?

I know it’s not a practical solution but neither is a plan for “sustainability and transformation” that transforms our internationally-revered health system into a death trap.

These so-called plans have gone too far already. They’re to be ripped up and a strong – and lasting – message sent to the swine who created them.

And the next person to see Jeremy Hunt should actually kick his ass. Hard.

Thousands of hospital beds are set to disappear, pregnant women will face long trips to give birth and a string of A&E units will be downgraded or even closed altogether as part of controversial NHS plans to reorganise healthcare in England.

A Guardian analysis of the 24 NHS regional plans that have now been published – more than half the total of 44 – has found that health service chiefs plan to push through an unprecedented centralisation of key hospital services across England.

Opposition to the plans is growing among campaign groups, councillors and a growing number of MPs, including Conservatives, in areas where major changes are planned amid fears that patients will be unable to access urgent care quickly enough.

Source: A&E, cancer and maternity units to close in major NHS overhaul | Society | The Guardian

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