Patients seen on time at Sheffield’s A&E

Sheffield's Northern General Hospital
Sheffield's Northern General Hospital
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Sheffield’s hospitals have made the grade for seeing A&E patients on time.

The Northern General Hospital’s emergency department and the Royal Hallamshire’s minor injuries unit saw more than 95 per cent of patients within four hours over the past year.

New figures show Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust dealt with 146,870 emergency cases - the city’s highest number ever - from April 2013 to the end of March.

Kirsten Major, the trust’s director of strategy and operations, said: “Ensuring patients receive good quality, timely care is very important to us, and our staff work very hard to achieve this.

“During the last year we have seen more patients attending A&E than ever before. Despite this, over 95 per cent of patients were seen in less than four hours.

“This is testament to the hard work of the emergency care teams but also the tireless work of hospital and community health teams who support the A&E team to deliver appropriate ongoing care.”

Elsewhere in South Yorkshire, Rotherham and Doncaster’s emergency departments also met the 95 per cent target, while Barnsley missed it by just one per cent.

Chris Edwards, chief officer of the NHS Rotherham Clinical Commissioning Group, said it was a ‘fantastic achievement’.

“Meeting this target is thanks to the hard work of staff working in the NHS, social care and voluntary sector,” said Mr Edwards.

“Making sure the people of Rotherham can get the right advice and treatment when they need NHS care urgently is a top priority, and everyone involved deserves to be credited.”

He added that patients should visit A&E only if absolutely necessary.

A rise in demand has been put down to several causes - from changes in out-of-hours arrangements, to an ageing population and cuts in social care. “It is essential that people continue to choose the right care for their symptoms – in most cases accessing their GP and pharmacy,” he said.