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Thirty trusts report more 12-hour waits, despite national improvement

Long A&E waits have got worse at more than one in five acute trusts, despite an improving trend nationally.

Around 30 acute trusts have reported an increase in long accident and emergency waits, bucking the national trend.

According to data covering the nine months to December, the proportion of waits more than 12 hours from time of arrival has improved to 6.3%, down from 8% during the same period in 2022. However, 28 out of 119 acute trusts reported a rise of up to 3 percentage points.

HSJ’s analysis, which used published and unpublished data, showed 11 of these trusts had worsened despite improving their headline performance against the four-hour target.

Adrian Boyle, of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, said the emphasis on the four-hour target “incentivises focus on the people who are being sent home, and takes effort and attention away from the people who are being admitted to hospital”.

He added: “The harms of long waits are greatest for people being admitted to hospital. We are disappointed by the current lack of focus in the planning guidance to help our most vulnerable patients.”

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 27 February 2024


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