As a doctor, I know how challenging these past weeks have been—and that there is another wayby Rosena Allin-Khan / January 12, 2018 / Leave a comment
When you look around an accident and emergency department, everything is on display: people’s pain, fear, courage and hope; the unfailing dedication and expertise of the staff who work there; and yes—the challenges facing the NHS.
From hospitals across the country we’ve heard that this winter crisis is not a surface issue or a temporary one. The symptoms are all connected and multiply into new problems. You don’t see it in statistics alone. But you do see it in A&E departments. I am a doctor, and so have an idea of how stressful it must be for staff working day in, day out, as well as the patients they are caring for.
The departments are completely overcrowded. The reality is that people feel forced to come to A&E that shouldn’t have to be there: people who couldn’t get a GP appointment, people who had to wait too long for a hip replacement and are now in severe pain. Together with the emergency cases—from heart attacks to road traffic accidents—it is simply too much for the resources we are currently putting in.