Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Accident and Emergency units struggle to cope as independent hospital commission prepares to hear from the public



Local hospitals are still struggling to meet A&E waiting time targets as a review into deteriorating hospital services is set to begin.
Latest figures show casualty units fell short of the target to see 95 per cent of patients in A&E departments within four hours.
December’s figures continue to show failures to meet the target since the closures of A&Es at Hammersmith and Central Middlesex hospitals in September. Opponents to the changes say too much pressure is now being put on the remaining A&Es, and that this would get far worse if further services were lost, such as those at Charing Cross Hospital.
Hammersmith & Fulham, Ealing, Hounslow and Brent councils set up the commission following the closures and because of NHS plans to effectively scrap the emergency unit at Charing Cross Hospital.
Official NHS figures show the trusts that run St Mary's, Charing Cross, West Middlesex, Ealing and Northwick Park hospitals have all failed to meet A&E waiting time targets in the past three months.
London North West Healthcare NHS Trust which runs Ealing and Northwick Park Hospitals recorded the worst result in the country in the week before Christmas at 53.7 per cent for emergency units treating the most seriously ill patients. Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs St Mary’s, Hammersmith and Charing Cross hospitals, also fared badly with 70.2 per cent. West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust was not much better at 75.5.
It will add to evidence to be weighed up by an independent commission chaired by leading barrister Michael Mansfield QC and set up by four local councils in North West London who have been deeply concerned by deteriorating local hospital services. The commission starts work this week and will set dates for oral evidence hearings which are planned to start next month.      
Hammersmith & Fulham Council Leader Stephen Cowan said: “These latest figures underline once again the importance of this review.
“The independent review, which is free of vested interests, is vital to assess what local trusts are doing to help ensure a safe and sustainable future for our hospital services. I encourage everyone to have their say at the forthcoming public meetings. The deteriorating state of local A&E services is evidence of just how important this review is for West London.”
In 2013 Michael Mansfield QC chaired the Lewisham People's Commission, an inquiry into the proposals to close services at Lewisham Hospital. He has represented defendants in criminal trials, appeals and inquiries in some of the most controversial legal cases in the country. He represented the family of Jean Charles de Menezes and the families of victims at the Bloody Sunday Inquiry. He chaired an inquiry into the shoot to kill policy in Northern Ireland and has represented many families at inquests, including the Marchioness disaster and the Lockerbie bombing.  He also represents the family of Stephen Lawrence.
He will be joined on the commission by Dr Stephen Hirst, a retired GP from Chiswick with extensive local knowledge and John Lister, researcher on the People's Inquiry into London's NHS in 2012 and Senior Lecturer in Journalism at Coventry University.
Written evidence on the impact of the changes should be submitted by Monday 2 February 2015 to Peter Smith, Clerk to the Commission, at Hammersmith & Fulham Council. Submissions should be addressed to him at Room 39, Hammersmith Town Hall, London W6 9JU or sent by email topeter.smith@lbhf.gov.uk. Later submissions will be forwarded to the Commission but may not be given the same attention as those received by the deadline.
% of patients seen within 4 hours
Week ending 28/12/14
Week ending 21/12/14
Week ending 14/12/14
Week ending  7/12/14
London North West Healthcare NHS Trust (Ealing, Northwick Park)
63.9
53.7
62.6
67.3
West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust
78.7
75.5
86.1
83.1
Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (St Mary’s, Hammersmith, Charing Cross)
79.3
70.2
72.1
75.7
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital
98.1
96.2
93.5
97.1
% of patients seen within 4 hours
Week  ending 30/11/14
Week ending 23/11/14
Week ending 16/11/14
Week ending 9/11/14
London North West Healthcare NHS Trust (Ealing, Northwick Park)
65.7
70.5
68.7
69.2
West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust
80.4
88.4
68.7
69.2
Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (St Mary’s, Hammersmith, Charing Cross)
79.2
83.0
77.5
85.8
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital
95.2
94.2
95.7
94.6
% of patients seen within 4 hours
Week ending 02/11/14
Week  ending 26/10/14
Week ending 19/10/14
Week ending 12/10/14
Week of 05/10/14
London North West Healthcare NHS Trust (Ealing, Northwick Park)
74.6
73.3
67.8
78.1
80.5
West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust
88.0
87.4
83.7
91.6
90.6
Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (St Mary’s, Hammersmith, Charing Cross)
85.4
86.5
82.5
87.9
83.1
Chelsea and Wesminster Hospital
93.8
96.0
95.1
97.0
97.4
Monday January 12, 2015
Check the Hammersmith and Fulham Council website:


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