08:08 Wednesday 05 February 2014

Nuisance patient's 31 A&E visits

Written byRICH GUTTRIDGE

Queen's Hospital Queen's Hospital

TEN people were responsible for more than 250 appointments at Burton’s Queen’s Hospital’s accident and emergency department last year, the Mail can reveal.

One patient visited a total of 31 times during 2013 - more than once a fortnight on average.

On the back of the figures, obtained by the Mail, the hospital’s clinical director James Crampton urged people only to visit if absolutely necessary.

The figures showed that nine people visited A&E more than 20 times during a troubled year which saw the department denied millions of pounds of funding and the trust that runs Queen’s Hospital placed into special measures.

The unit was overlooked by the Government last September when more than £250 million was distributed to struggling A&E departments, to the frustration of bosses.

The department has struggled in recent weeks to meet the required target of seeing 95 per cent of its patients within four hours, with bosses reminding people when they should use A&E.

Dr Crampton said: “A&E services are for genuine emergencies such as heavy blood loss, chest pains, loss of consciousness or broken bones.

“The emergency department consultants flag up details of frequent attenders to their GP. We also liaise with other colleagues to see if an alternative source of healthcare is suitable in order to help these patients. These measures will hopefully encourage patients to attend the A&E with appropriate emergencies.”

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