"A&E Visit 7 Jan Approx 4-30 A.M"
About: University Hospital Of North Durham University Hospital Of North Durham Durham DH1 5TW
Posted by sandra whitfield
Ambulance arrived at A&E dept a little before 4-30am and taken into room and seen by nursing staff without delay. We were told that we may have to wait a couple of hours to be seen by a doctor however the reason we were told and this was later confirmed by doctors was that there was only one doctor and one trainee working on the dept. These doctors were covering A&E /resus as well as a small ward. It is true to say we found this quite alarming. This level of staffing is clearly seriously inadequate to provide a safe and effective level of health care to patients. We finally were seen by a doctor at approx 9-45 having waited over 5 hours. We were by no means alone and were aware of other patients, some in obvious pain and distress waiting as long or even longer. It was not until day shift doctors arrived at 8am that there was any visible doctor presence on the A&E unit at all. When we were finally seen all the staff were apologetic and very kind and helpful. The staffing levels during the night in A&E at this hospital in our experience is cause for concern. It is difficult to understand how senior management of this hospital allows this dept to remain operative with such low numbers of doctors on duty without questioning the standard of service available and intervening with appropriate remedial measures to meet their responsibility in the provision of quality NHS care.