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  1. Published on: 06/03/2013 08:46 AMReported by: roving-eye
    Patient overload at Southport hospital's Accident & Emergency Department has once again been affecting Ambulance service performance, a health watchdog has revealed.



    Southport Lib Dem councillor Tony Dawson told Sefton Council's Health Scrutiny Committee last night (Tuesday) that he had received a number of complaints about ambulance delays in the past week which had all been attributable to paramedics having to look after patients on trolleys at Southport hospital while doctors and nurses looked to ways of admitting them to a 'full up' hospital. These included a blind woman who had collapsed in Trafalgar Road and a child who was injured at school.

    Ambulance Trust staff showed the health scrutiny committee slides which demonstrated that all hospitals in the region experienced serious problems in meeting the target of 20 minute average for release of ambulances. All were achieving about 30 minute averages although there were some occasions when the situation was much worse than this. Southport Hospital was marginally the worst performer in the region.



    Both Ambulance Trust and Southport hospital representatives at the meeting assured councillors that they were always working together to try to improve this problem but there had recently been a sizeable increase in both general pressures on hospital admittances in Southport and 999 calls to the ambulance service which both made the problem more difficult to deal with.

    "This is a problem which has come up at different times over the past dozen years, says Cllr Dawson. "And each time the hospital and ambulance staff agree to address them. Unfortunately the pressures causing these problems are not going away."

    "We are not in a position to say whether or not these specific incidents could be prevented. They are being looked at individually by NHS managers."

    "If genuine calls to our 999 ambulance service are still increasing then we have to do every thing we can to ensure that patients are not waiting 40 minutes for an ambulance from Blackburn because the Southport Ambulance is sitting at the hospital."

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  3. local says:06/03/2013 10:43 AM
    An objective and in depth analysis of the A&E departments and the entire hospitals working practices needs undertaking asap.
    There are too many members of staff (at all levels) being carried by diligent and conscientous ones.
    Some staff seem to be on a permanent work to rule unfairly burdening the others.

  4. mjw0076 says:06/03/2013 12:23 PM
    I was driving between Southport & Ormskirk with one ambulance in front of me and 2 behind they then all turned left at the Morris Dancers towards Burscough Where were they all swanning to ? not to Southport or Ormskirk Hospitals, could they have been utilised on one transport need

  5. Rhino-Hamster says:06/03/2013 02:36 PM
    No mention of the fact they're too busy faffing about between Southport and Ormskirk due to some idiot at the top!

    When I was taken into Southport A&E, just over 3 years ago, I had to be transported to Ormskirk via ambulance, as after they checked me in the Adult section, they had to check my unborn baby in Ormskirk, as they didn't have anyone in Southport to scan the baby at a weekend.
    As it was not a life and death emergency, the ambulance went at normal speed, presumably back also, possibly taking an hour up of that paramedics time and use of the ambulance for more important matters, and no, I didn't have a choice in getting there any other way.

  6. darts says:06/03/2013 03:34 PM
    This situation arises most of the time because people who do not really need to use an ambulance call one and the people who cannot get an appointment with their gp think that it is alright to 'drop in' at A&E

  7. Jon_B says:06/03/2013 04:22 PM
    I think a huge problem is people think two things, falsely. Either:

    "I need to go to hospital, call an ambulance to take me" - No it's not a taxi

    Or

    "I'm in pain, ring an ambulance" - Pain doesn't necessarily mean it's an emergency

    It needs to be drummed into people, ambulances aren't just a lift to A&E, they are there for life threatening emergencies only.

  8. silver fox says:06/03/2013 07:16 PM
    Reading the report sounds more like a problem dealing with patients on arrival at hospital rather than an ambulance problem, no matter what anyone does if an ambulance is sat at a hospital with a patient, it can't do any other work until their patients have been handed over, but at times the hospital doesn't have the capacity or staff to deal with the numbers.

    Now I just wonder why that is, nothing to do with cut backs of course, you'd better get used to it if this government gets it's way regarding the NHS.

  9. cherie brandie says:06/03/2013 09:57 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by silver fox View Post
    you'd better get used to it if this government gets it's way regarding the NHS.
    This problem first emered locally under the last Labour government. The Labour Party, of course, admitted they had plans to cut the NHS even deeper, having forced every single NHS Trust in the land to privatise services.

    Furthermore, as the Mid Staffs Inquiry has just shown us, Labour NHS Ministers took away from hospital managers the need to show anyone that they were bothering about trying to help patients or keep them alive.

  10. snazzycracker says:07/03/2013 02:16 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by cherie brandie View Post
    This problem first emered locally under the last Labour government. The Labour Party, of course, admitted they had plans to cut the NHS even deeper, having forced every single NHS Trust in the land to privatise services.

    Furthermore, as the Mid Staffs Inquiry has just shown us, Labour NHS Ministers took away from hospital managers the need to show anyone that they were bothering about trying to help patients or keep them alive.
    Oh please, don't try and put the blame at Labours door.
    What services exactly are you claiming Labour forced them to privatise? would it be somehing minor like cleaning or catering? sounds like you are deliberately trying to make it sound like the major patient services were privatised by Labour, when this is not true.
    As for forcing every NHS trust to privatise services I think you'll find that's what the Conservatives/Lib Dems are currently trying to sneak in through the back door with their recently introduced NHS reforms or should I say NHS sell off.
    As for the Mid Staffs Inquiry, don't forget to mention the current ConDem health minister who was deeply involved in the issue in the first place.

  11. torchwud says:07/03/2013 06:18 PM
    this problem is caused by southport hospital (best trust winners for 3 years?????? so says the banner) unfortunately all the ambulance crews are stuck in a+e whilst hospital staff do paperwork and faf about..get an overspill ward open especially on a monday and sort it, but dont blame the ambulance service put the blame at the desk of the hospital trust!

  12. darts says:07/03/2013 08:58 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by torchwud View Post
    this problem is caused by southport hospital (best trust winners for 3 years?????? so says the banner) unfortunately all the ambulance crews are stuck in a+e whilst hospital staff do paperwork and faf about..get an overspill ward open especially on a monday and sort it, but dont blame the ambulance service put the blame at the desk of the hospital trust!
    i actually work in A&E and yes there is too much paperwork but this is needed for the patients but i can ensure you the staff do not have time to FAF about as you put it because if they did they would not go without their breaks as they so often do, the patients are their priority


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