Wye Valley NHS Trust is advising people to think twice before they head for their local Emergency department – or they could face a long wait.
The advice from hospital bosses is to use alternatives - such as telephoning NHS 111, using the GP walk in centre in Hereford, the Minor Injury Units at Ross and Leominster Community Hospitals, seeing their local GP or seeking advice from their local pharmacy - if their condition or injury is not serious.
“Our Emergency department has been under intense pressure since the start of the year. Our nursing and clinical staff are doing a great job, but they are having to prioritise the very sick patients which means those with minor injuries are having to wait a long time,” said Jon Barnes, Wye Valley NHS Trust’s chief operating officer.
“At this moment in time, the Emergency department is only for people who are seriously ill and need urgent care and treatment,” added Jon, who said they were having many more older people turning up in the Emergency Department who had more complex needs and who had to be admitted for treatment.
As is normal for this time of the year, the Emergency department has seen a spike in the number of patients requiring treatment for hip fractures, respiratory conditions and cardiac problems.
Due to the increased numbers of patients coming into the hospital the Trust has had to stand down planned inpatient and outpatient activity. All affected patients have been informed.
We have opened additional inpatient capacity where we can to accommodate the extra patients we are seeing.
“Herefordshire is fortunate to have some great alternatives to the Emergency department. Please consider these before you head to the Emergency department. If your condition is not serious, you could face a long wait.”
The Trust is working with the West Midlands Ambulance Service and the commissioners for healthcare in the county, the Herefordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, to manage the situation.
Note to Editors:
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For further information please contact:
John Burnett, Communication and Engagement Manager, Wye Valley NHS Trust: 01432 372928 or Amanda Millichip, Communications Officer 01432 355444 ext. 5105.