Frank Field MP
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Trouble in the NHS

9
Nov

Despite the Herculean efforts of frontline NHS staff, residents are reporting a worryingly sharp decline in the quality of care being administered by our local health services.

Things already look worse than last year and we’ve not even reached the winter pinch points. In August, 1,095 people waited more than four hours in A&E; up by 308 on the same month last year.

Similarly, in July, 14% of patients waited a week or more for an appointment with a GP or Practice Nurse; up by two percentage points on the same month last year, and four percentage points on the same month two years ago.

An elderly resident recently informed me they were waiting on a trolley for five hours, and noticed eight other patients in a similar situation, before being seen. Ambulance staff doing the noble thing by tending to patients on trolleys are subsequently unable to respond to further emergency calls.

Another elderly resident was told they would need to wait over a year-and-a-half for a hip operation. 

Moreover, telephone booking systems for GP appointments are becoming overloaded, with some residents finding it difficult to get through and then having to wait several weeks for an appointment.

I’ve taken up each of these cases with the health authorities, but clearly there is a need for two urgent actions: an increase in funding from the Government, which I recently advocated to a House of Lords Select Committee on the NHS, and a full-blooded attempt to support Birkenhead’s primary healthcare services which can ease at least some of the pressure on A&E.

My next surgery is this Friday 11th November at 5pm at Birkenhead Town Hall.


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