"Wife's A and E admission"

About: Leicester Royal Infirmary

My wife was recently rushed into the hospital following a seizure and it was an obviously busy day as patients were queueing up to be seen. I felt that there was a distinct lack of staff able to treat my wife and often found myself having to keep her calm. I don't feel that this was the staff's fault, but looking around the a and e major's area could quite obviously observe that it is plagued by patient's who often should have gone to the walk in centre instead or their own gp. Case in point as one patient was lying in bed one minute moaning, and a few minutes later leaving with a box of senna. One wonders how often occasions like this occur? The staff on the whole were polite and doing their best given the circumstances.

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Response from Leicester Royal Infirmary

Dear anonymous, Thank you for your comments and observations. I am glad you felt the staff were polite and working hard. I hope your overall experience was as positive as it could be given the circumstances. It is hard to comment on staffing numbers without knowing which day your wife arrived. (Sometimes we may seem short staffed because we have moved nurses from majors to the resuscitation room to help with a sudden rush of critically ill patients). That said, we have had a number of days over recent weeks where for a variety of reasons (including illness) we have been short-staffed. I'm happy to say that on the nursing side at least, recruitment is progressing. I would also like to thank you for working with the staff and looking after your wife. Good NHS care in general, and emergency care in particular, is very dependent on patients' families and staff working together in partnership. I am sure the nurses appreciated your assistance. Finally, regarding your question on how many patients come to the Emergency Department unnecessarily, it's something EDs are often asked by members of parliament all the way down to local commissioners. So you're in good company! Surveys and research studies suggest between 10 to 30% of patients who come to the Emergency Department could be seen elsewhere. Our previous internal review for Leicester suggested such attendances are probably closer to the 10 to 15% mark. We have since worked closely with a number of agencies, and in particular the Urgent Care Centre so that appropriate patients may be seen in less acute settings. This is something we constantly review - getting the right patient to the right care setting is best for both patients and the health system. Thank you once again for your feedback. We hope your wife is doing well. Yours sincerely Pro Mukherjee Consultant in Emergency Medicine University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

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