In the UK, “500 people could die every week from emergency room delays,” a senior health official warns. Dr. Adrian Boyle, president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, told Sky News waiting times in December may have broken records.
In November, 37,837 patients waited more than 12 hours in emergency services, NHS England figures show. That’s an increase of nearly 355 percent from November 2021, when about 10,646 patients waited longer than 12 hours.
“If you look at the charts they are all going in the wrong direction. A real reset is needed. We need to get into a situation where we can’t just shrug our shoulders and say ‘This winter has been terrible, let’s do nothing until next winter,” said Boyle.
“We need to increase our capacity within our hospitals, we need to make sure that there are alternative ways for people to not just go to the ambulance service and the emergency room. We can’t go on like this; it’s unsafe and it’s undignified.”
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Hour waiting for ambulance
Last week, one in five ambulance patients in England waited more than an hour in front of the hospital to be transferred to emergency services.
The overburdening of the UK healthcare system is also leading to an increase in accidents during surgery, according to figures from the UK health service analyzed by the PA news agency. Between April 2021 and March 2022, objects were accidentally left in patients’ bodies 291 times. In the same period between 2001 and 2002, this happened 156 times, and 138 times two years later.
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