Patient numbers fall at Wigan's casualty departments amid strikes by staff

Fewer patients turned up at Wigan’s casualty departments last month, new figures reveal.
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Hospital bosses urged people to seek medical care and advice in the right place, and only go to A&E if essential, as the NHS faced industrial action by junior doctors and nurses, as well as the Easter bank holiday weekend.

New data from NHS England shows that message was heeded, as 12,100 patients attended Wigan Infirmary’s A&E unit and Leigh Walk-In Centre in April – down 5.5 per cent from 12,807 in March.

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Overall 68.3 per cent of people were seen within the target time of four hours – up from 66.3 per cent the month before – but this broke down to just 46.6 per cent of patients at A&E, bolstered by 99.4 per cent at the walk-in centre.

The trust saw 2,775 emergency admissions in April, down from 5.2 per cent from 2,927 in March, with most patients coming from A&E.

There were still long waits for a bed after the decision to admit was made, with 1,393 patients waiting for more than four hours (down from 1,485) and 306 delayed by more than 12 hours (down from 351).

Nationally, 74.6 per cent of patients in England were seen within four hours in A&Es last month, up from 71.5 per cent in March, which was the highest percentage since September 2021.

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The number of people waiting more than 12 hours in A&E departments for a bed stood at 26,899 in April, down 32 per cent from 39,687 in March, while fewer people waited at least four hours, down 21 per cent from 144,308 in March to 113,437 in April.