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Patients are waiting 'too long' at A&E, says Monitor

More than twice as many foundation trusts are missing the four-hour A&E targets this year compared with 2012/13, the foundation trust regulator has found.

Monitor’s quarterly report found that 31 foundation trusts – 38% - missed the target to see patients within four hours of them arriving at A&E. This compared with 13 (16%) in the same period the year before.

The regulator said it would be working with NHS England and the NHS Trust Development Authority to support trusts to meet their targets this winter.

Jason Dorsett, financial risk and reporting director at Monitor, said: ‘Our analysis of returns from foundation trusts shows that patients are still waiting too long at A&Es in a number of foundation trusts.

‘Increased demand means more than ever that trusts need better and earlier planning to make sure they deal with these problems.  

This comes as the Government has pledged £500m over the next two years to help struggling trusts cope with winter pressures.

The quarterly report also found that 48 trusts were in deficit in quarter one, compared with 36 in the same period last year, with the overall deficit totalling £74m.

Readers' comments (6)

  • 'Increased demand means more than ever'

    Time to finally take steps to reduce demand?

    Or time for politicians to blame someone/ anyone else so they do not do anything that will upset the electorate.

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  • "The regulator said it would be working with NHS England and the NHS Trust Development Authority to support trusts to meet their targets this winter."

    It always amazes me this phrase, "to support". What this in actual fact means that the TDA and/or NHS England will be scheduling urgent mandatory-attendance meetings with little or no notice, so they can ask trusts the question 'what are you going to do about it'. That's not what support is.

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  • NHS funding is not a bottomless pit and neither is the supply of doctors and nurses trained to work in A&E. Surely the response should be to address inappropriate demand - not blame A&E departments for being unable to keep up?

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  • I spent six hours waiting in A&E but at the end of the day, got the care I needed.

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  • 4 hour target for how many people ? All the town ? How many doctors, nurses, beds, radiographer, personnel in A+E ? How many beds free in the hospital ? The NHS is just completely utterly mad. Targets without input numbers, staff to patient ratios . = 4. What equals to 4? Managers without basic arithmetic. Nuts !!
    Spell out the ratios. If an average of 20 patients arrive per hour we have the staff. If 40 arrive, we don't.

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  • Anon 1033 is so right. Why 4 hours ? Not 1,2, 3 etc. Why not 1? What are all these targets based on ? What ratios ? What guidelines ? Can we have a look at these please.

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