"patients forced to queue in corridors"

About: Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital

I recently spent 8 hours at new hospital with a family member. Patients arriving by ambulance were lined up in a narrow corridor where we were told we would have a 2 hour wait. No seats in this area for relatives who were forced to stand. Ambulance staff said this was a quiet day and the wait is usually much longer. After tests at 9pm we were told we needed to stay in but there were no beds. We said we would go home and get test results following day but were made to wait until after 11pm before being sent home after midnight. It was an awful experience and a far cry from our earlier experience at a small local a and e where within 2 hours the patient was treated and admitted to a ward. I would never go back, go to RVI instead.

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Response from Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital

Dear Sir / Madam,

Many thanks for bringing this to our attention – I am very sorry that your recent visit to The Northumbria involved a frustrating and prolonged wait. I am also sorry for any discomfort you experienced when you were unable to get a seat. I can imagine how difficult this must have been for you.

The hospital has been extremely busy and it is obviously extremely disappointing when this prevents us from providing the high quality and timely care we aim for. I will ensure your review is shared with the clinical team in emergency care – I know they are busy working extremely hard to prepare for the demands of winter and ensure that people receive the right care, at the right time and in the right place.

I hope your relative is feeling a lot better. With best wishes, Annie

Annie Laverty – director of patient experience