Southend Hospital services under extreme pressure
21 November 2016
Southend University Hospital has declared an internal critical incident to its external health and local authority partners as high demand continues.
In light of the continuing
pressures on the hospital's emergency and acute services, the Trust
has declared an internal critical incident and measures to safely
manage the issues and make beds available to admit very unwell
patients from the Emergency Department.
The decision comes as
continuing high numbers of acutely ill and injured patients require
admission with the hospital already operating at full capacity
The Trust's executive team
has taken the decision to cancel some elective operations on
Tuesday 22 November to free up senior clinical staff, allowing
inpatients to be seen more frequently and more quickly.
Denise Townsend, Associate
Chief Nurse, said: "The pressure on our services is not abating and
this is the case with other Trusts across Essex and the wider
region. We continue to see very high numbers of acutely unwell
medical patients coming through our doors.
"Our staff are working
extremely hard to cope with the current pressures while maintaining
high standards of care, and I'd like to thank them for their
continued dedication in dealing with these continuing
"We are currently evaluating
our capacity to carry out elective operations and may cancel
further operations to ensure we are concentrating all efforts on
reviewing our inpatients, safely discharging those patients who are
medically fit and freeing up more beds.
"We will contact every
patient affected by the cancellations, so if you do not hear from
us please do attend your scheduled appointment as planned."
To assist the hospital in
dealing with the situation, the Trust would like to remind members
of the public to only visit the Emergency Department if they are
seriously unwell or critically injured.
Denise added: "The Emergency
Department is very busy and we have to warn patients that those
attending with 'non-urgent' conditions will wait much longer than
usual as patients are prioritised according to how unwell they
"We would like to remind
anyone who is unsure of the best course of action to always ring
NHS 111 for health advice 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or to
speak with your GP or pharmacist."