Top performing A&E prepares for busy period

The Accident and Emergency (A&E) at Wigan hospital
The Accident and Emergency (A&E) at Wigan hospital

WIGAN’S A&E is leading the way in terms of hitting waiting time targets, according to official figures.

And Infirmary bosses have issued guidance on how residents can ease pressure on the department during the busy end of year period.

Latest NHS statistics show Wigan is the only Trust across GM to have hit the 95 per cent target for patients to have been admitted, discharged or transferred within four hours.

And last year, during the national waiting times crisis, the borough’s A&E also coped favourably compared with many other areas.

A Trust spokesman told the Evening Post: “Wigan continues to be the best performing A&E in GM.

“This is due to tremendous hard work of staff who always strive to provide the highest quality care to their patients but pressure in the department is growing.

“Over the last two months we have seen growing numbers of patients attending A&E and we are asking for the public’s support to only use A&E when absolutely necessary.

Please remember that the A&E department provides vital care for life-threatening emergencies, such as loss of consciousness, suspected heart attacks, breathing difficulties, or severe bleeding that cannot be stopped.”

NHS bosses are also advising residents to take note of the Stay Well This Winter campaign which advises them to get flu vaccinations as early as possible, heat your home to 18 degrees, seek advice from a pharmacist if you feel unwell and to ensure prescriptions are updated to last through the holiday period.

The spokesman added: “The above advice should help people that are most vulnerable to falling seriously ill with winter ailments to avoid the need for hospital treatment.

“We also encourage everyone to keep an eye on elderly or frail friends, neighbours and relatives.”

Trust chief executive Andrew Foster said this week: “With all the tinsel and fairy lights now being decked in the run-up to Christmas, it is very easy to lose sight of the pressures we face.

“I am pleased to see a huge amount of preparatory work that has been carried out to minimise the usual stresses and strains on our emergency care system.

Our A&E department is already becoming increasingly busy as the weeks pass, seeing more and more very poorly patients in urgent need of our care. This pressure is often pushed onto the wards and departments, and this is where strong leadership and safe discharge management plays a vital part.”