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Winter pressure on Hertfordshire's hospitals "reviewed on a daily basis"

14 Января 2018

In a letter to the secretary of state for health and social care, Jeremy Hunt, its chief executive, Chris Hopson, writes: "Despite preparing for this winter better than ever before, national and local preparations have been insufficient to meet the levels of patient demand that trusts are now experiencing".

Dr Anthea Mowat, chairwoman of the British Medical Association's representative body, said: "The NHS is in the grips of another winter crisis, as patients face long delays in care, operations are cancelled and staff find themselves working under extremely hard circumstances".

It's as there are reports of patients waiting for hours in corridors and the ambulance service struggling to cope with demand.

NHS England's National Emergency Pressures Panel (NEPP) yesterday recommended that hospitals defer day operations, outpatient appointments and non-urgent inpatient care to concentrate on emergency treatment.

The statement has also advised that people should not attend the hospital's Emergency Department unless you need emergency treatment.

Mr Graves said: "We really appreciate the support that we have received and would like to thank the public for their understanding during what has been an incredibly busy period".

The move comes after hospital trusts across England reported huge pressure over the festive period, with one A&E consultant comparing conditions in his hospital in Stoke to the third world. Officials confirmed that cancer operations and time-critical procedures should go ahead as planned.

Hospitals have now been told to cancel any day-case and outpatient procedures, which would not require an overnight bed and where patients would typically walk out after being seen.

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NHS England has even given the green light for hospitals to put patients in mixed sex wards if they must.

That is why we are making these further recommendations today.

Trudie Davies, director of operations for hospital services at the trust, said: "We are continually risk assessing capacity to ensure that we are able to safely treat both acute and elective patients. There is increased potential for patient care and safety to be compromised".

Meanwhile, Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group said the health system in the whole county has declared OPEL4.

There were also early indications of an increasing number of cases of flu and some a rise in the severity of illness among patients arriving at accident and emergency departments.

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the county's hospitals, has said that it has seen a high number of very sick patients in recent days.

"But I recognise for those people that have had their operations postponed this is disappointing, it's frustrating".

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Winter pressure on Hertfordshire's hospitals