Harrogate A&E ‘exceptionally busy’

Harrogate District Hospital
Harrogate District Hospital

Emergency department services in Harrogate are “exceptionally busy” , the hospital trust has warned, urging residents only to visit with serious injuries or illnesses.

The situation at the moment is “fast moving” and can change very quickly, Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust said.

But, reassuring residents over this week’s pressures, which have dominated the news , chief executive Dr Ros Tolcher has said that extra measures are in place to cope with the current situation.

Dr Tolcher said: “Levels of demand are being constantly monitored to help us to put additional staff and facilities in place so that we can safely care for those who need our services.

“We are seeing high numbers of very poorly patients and currently have over 25 additional beds open and extra staff in place.

“We are working very hard to discharge patients as quickly as possible once it is clinically appropriate to do so.”

Nationally, NHS England has come under fire this week as it emerges its waiting times for emergency treatment are at the worst levels for a decade.

Across the country, new figures show, 92.6 per cent of patients were seen within four hours compared to its 95 per cent target.

In Harrogate, the hospital trust has maintained its levels at around 95 per cent for the past three weeks, despite an increase in numbers at the emergency department.

It is comparing well against other hospitals in the region, with Leeds Teaching Hospital at 90 per cent treated within four hours and York 85.

But is still urging residents to consider if a visit to hospital is necessary.

“Our Emergency Department at Harrogate District Hospital remains exceptionally busy and we would request that people use other services, such as NHS111, their local pharmacy or GP, for health advice on less serious conditions and only visit A&E with serious injuries or illnesses,” said Dr Tolcher.

“Our community-based services are also extremely busy looking after people in their own homes and communities to help reduce their chance of needing hospital care.

“Patient safety remains our top priority and we would like to thank all of our staff for their dedication and commitment to delivering high quality care at this exceptionally busy time.”