Thursday, January 15, 2015

A and E crisis - amended 20th January

Much in the media in recent weeks about the crisis in Accident and Emergency, with articles comparing A and E unfavourably to military hospitals in the Iraq War, and about the longer and longer wait until you are seen.  Here are some things I have come across in the last few days:

Surviving a night in A and E: a doctor's story - an anonymous diary of one doctor's night duty in A and E, giving an insight into the patients and the staff.  Several patients who ought to be somewhere else, some who are there because they are drunk, and some who are in the right place.

A & E crisis: understanding health at a systems level could drive a better NHS - by Terry Young, Professor of Healthcare Systems at Brunel University, arguing that it is the complexity of the system that needs to be tackled, and arguing that it is time to use the tools that have been developed in other complex areas of life, referring to Atul Gawande's recent Reith Lectures.  This article is part of a series - go to the end of this page to see links to others.

A report in the BMJ about a recent report from the Health Foundation and the Nuffield Trust, which finds that most reasons for the problems do not explain the whole story.  You will need a subscription to read this article.

Rather older, dating from July 2013, a Lancet article by John House (I know, I thought that, but not him!), asking experts about the causes of the crisis.  You will need a subscription to read this too.

An Observer article about operations being cancelled because of the crisis.

The work of the King's Fund on urgent and emergency care. This site includes statistics, publications, and an "alternative guide" which examines the myths.

A new "finally", added 20th January - the BBC's A and E Tracker, which indicates how many patients in the four home nations were seen within 4 hours (England is hiding under "How is your local hospital doing?", at least for me, in England).   You can search by postcode to see how your local hospital is faring.

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