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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

 

A&E patients left in ambulances for up to FIVE hours ‘so trusts can meet government targets’

‘Seriously ill patients are being kept in ambulances outside hospitals for hours so NHS trusts do not miss Government targets.

Thousands of people a year are having to wait outside accident and emergency departments because trusts will not let them in until they can treat them within four hours, in line with a Labour pledge.

The hold-ups mean ambulances are not available to answer fresh 999 calls.

Doctors warned last night that the practice of “patient-stacking” was putting patients’ health at risk.

Figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats show that last year 43,576 patients waited longer than one hour before being let into emergency units.’




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