A&E waiting times increase sharply

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Figures released by NHS England this week have shown an increase in A&E waiting times across Calderdale and Huddersfield as the number of people waiting for more than four hours has increased by over a third in 12 months.

From October to December 2013, 4.5 per cent (1,514 out of 33,818 patient admissions) were seen within the Government’s target of four hours - of the 1,514 total, 511 were classed as emergencies.

8th April 2010. 'Linda Riordan MP for Halifax.

8th April 2010. 'Linda Riordan MP for Halifax.

During the same period in 2014, 7 per cent (2,530 out of 35,927 patient admissions) were seen within four hours - of the 2,530 total, 686 were classed as emergencies.

Labour MP for Halifax Linda Riordan said: “This Government’s failed policies have caused an A&E crisis, huge waiting times and pressure on capacity.

“If two local A&Es can’t handle such a surge in demand, there’s no chance one A&E will be able to.

“Now more than ever, local people are saying ‘hands off our A&E’. Just imagine if we were having a really cold winter.

“We need an A&E in Halifax for Halifax. It’s time the Government and health bosses recognised that and stopped this callous closure proposal once and for all.”

A staff member at Calderdale Royal Hosptailwho wished to remain anonymous said: “Staff morale in most departments is already at rock bottom with many left feeling like they are on a sinking ship.”

A spokesperson from the Trust said: “Our Trust, as all trusts, are experiencing high levels of patients requiring A&E care and then admission.

“The pressure varies operationally from hour to hour. So far, no MAJAX (Major Incident Procedure) has been called.”

The national A&E crisis was addressed by David Cameron during Prime Minister’s Questions. He said: “I deeply regret any patient who does not get a good service.”