Hospitals in Stoke and Stafford critically full

Bosses at Stoke and Stafford's hospitals say they're struggling to find beds for patients.

Their Accident and Emergency departments are facing extreme period, at the start of the busy winter period.

Richard Beeken, Chief Operating Officer at the University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, said: "The whole Royal Stoke hospital and the County Hospital in Stafford are currently critically full.

"The impact of that is that patients who are acutely unwell and awaiting admission to hospital beds are waiting a very lengthy period, and not receiving a good experience in the process.

"We have got 175 individuals who are in our hospital beds at Stoke who are medically fit, and awaiting transfer either home or to a residental or care home placement.

"Many of them have been waiting a long time for their discharge.

"It is not good for them, it is not good for their relatives, and it is certainly not good for the wider health system."

Bosses are now appealing for help to reduce the pressures on services through responsible use of A&E, such as in critical or life-threatening situation.

Mr Beeken added: “I encourage you to really think about whether you need to come to A&E or whether your condition could be treated better elsewhere.

"Although many walk-in patients do need emergency care, only 30% of the 600 people attending A&E on a typical day needed to be admitted to a hospital bed. This means that there are many people who could have chosen an alternative to A&E.

“Our Emergency Centre staff are here to treat accidents and emergencies so my team are asking everyone to please use services wisely and allow us to focus on the people that really do need our care.

"I would like to thank the staff across the NHS for their continued hard work and professionalism despite the pressures.”

They are suggesting the following alternatives: 

  • PHARMACY: Your pharmacy can provide confidential, expert advice and treatment for a range of common illnesses and complaints, without having to wait for a GP appointment.
  • NHS 111: This service has been introduced to make it easier for you to access local NHS healthcare services in England. NHS 111 is a fast and easy way to get the right help, whatever the time. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free.
  • YOUR GP: For medical advice or for illnesses you can't shake off. You should be able to get an appointment with your surgery within 24 hours, Monday to Friday. If your doctors are closed call your doctor's surgery and you will be transferred to the GP out of Hours Service
  • WALK-IN CENTRES: Walk-in centres can be used to treat minor injuries and ailments.


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