England’s accident and emergency departments may be understaffed by nearly 10% on average, a BBC 5 Live survey has suggested. The BBC 5 Live Freedom of Information request discovered that 101 out of 166 hospital trusts responding had 1,260 vacant posts.
Doidge, C. (2013). A&E departments understaffed by nearly 10%, BBC survey suggests. London: BBC News (BBC 5 Live), September 8th 2013.
This research relates to a separate NHS Confederation survey, discussed below.
NHS Confederation Survey of Senior NHS Leaders
An NHS Confederation briefing presents the findings of a poll of 125 senior health service leaders, and an analysis of national data, identifying the six major causes / potential solutions influencing local A&E pressures. This is the latest prediction about winter pressures on A&E services.
Ideas under discussion (and respondents’ opinions about these suggestions) concerning possible solutions to ease A&E pressures include:
- Ending the emergency marginal tariff.
- Introducing a national initiative to incentivise clinicians to work in A&E.
- Campaigning to ensure patients are aware of alternatives to A&E departments.
- Investing more in community, primary and social care.
- Giving organisations earlier notice of NHS winter pressure funding.
- Reducing the 95% standard for patients waiting four hours or less in A&E.
Emergency care: an accident waiting to happen? NHS Confederation Briefing, Issue 268. London: NHS Confederation, September 2013.
College of Emergency Medicine Survey and Report
Increasing demand, under-staffing and pressures of work are reported to be causing staff sickness and burnout.
Triggle, N. (2013). A&E doctors say pressure is a threat to patient safety. London: BBC Health News, October 8th 2013.
This relates to:
Stretched to the limit: a survey of emergency medicine consultants in the UK. London: College of Emergency Medicine, October 2013.
Spending on locum doctors to fill staff shortages in A&E units in England has risen by 60% in three years; £83.3m was spent in 2012-2013, compared to £52m in 2009-10.
Triggle, N. (2014). Sharp rise in spending on A&E locum doctors. London: BBC Health News, January 14th 2014.