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Are Missed A&E Targets The New Normal?

Posted on Wednesday 15th April 2015 by David Simpson

Missed waiting time targets appear to be the ‘new normal’ at A&E.David Simpson - Partner, Coles Miller

NHS England has missed its A&E target for the 27th week in a row. Not since September 2014 has A&E managed to see its target 95 per cent of patients within four hours.

Missing the target is bad enough. Doing it week after week for half a year is dreadful.

But most depressing of all is the seeming inevitability of it all – and the impact on patients. After all, these are frontline accident and emergency services.

To be fair, at present only a minority of the medical negligence claims Coles Miller handles each year are against A&E specifically. Most of the others are against other hospital departments or GPs.

But we expect that to rise – A&E teams cannot keep missing targets on a weekly basis and expect injured patients to sit back and do nothing. Read here how Coles Miller helps patients.

NHS statisticians will tell you that last week A&E saw 92.4 per cent of patients within four hours – an improvement on the previous week and only 2.6 basis points below target.

But then the statisticians are not the ones having to wait hours for treatment because A&E is badly understaffed.

Since September the weekly admissions total has varied between around 400,000 and just over 440,000, according to The King’s Fund.

Multiply that by the statisticians’ 2.6 per cent and you are looking at anything between 10,400 and 11,440 injured patients having to wait more than four hours in any given week.

It’s not good enough. And it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone – not when it’s happened 27 weeks on the trot.

Unhappy about the way you have been treated in A&E? Have you suffered as a result of their clinical negligence? Contact Coles Miller Partner David Simpson, 01202 355695.

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