January is the busiest month of the year for the NHS – with patients often queuing in corridors and ambulances.
In 2019 Emergency Department waiting times in England were the worst on record, with 2000 patients waiting for more than 12 hours for a hospital bed in December. At the same time latest researchshows that over the past three years almost 5500 patients have died in emergency departments while waiting for a hospital bed.
Part of the problem is that patients who are admitted as emergencies to hospital can be really sick and unstable. So making the decision as to when they are getting better and are safe to go home (and the bed is free) is complicated and risky.
This article by Christian P Subbe, Senior Clinical Lecturer in Acute & Critical Care Medicine, School of Medical Science,s is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
Publication date: 24 January 2020