Survey gives thumbs up to A&E facilities

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PATIENTS visiting the Northern General’s accident and emergency department in Sheffield have praised its efficiency in a survey of more than 800 people.

Fast ambulance crews and quicker examination times were highlighted in the independent review by the Picker Institutes between January and March 2012.

There were questions on several aspects of care, including time spent with doctors or nurses, the quality of advice given when leaving and if patients felt everything about their care was clearly explained to them.

Results for the A&E department were significantly better than the national average in a number of areas.

It showed that 91 per cent of patients thought that the courtesy of reception staff was excellent, very good or good, while 92 per cent of patients thought the department was clean or very clean.

The survey also showed that since the last review, in 2008, the trust had made significant progress in explaining to patients how long they may have to wait, and making sure that enough information is given to patients.

The trust has also improved on taking family or home situations into account when patients were ready to be discharged.

The verdict has pleased senior staff who are planning to invest more than £4 million to improve facilities at the department.