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From The Socialist newspaper, 6 March 2019

A&E 4-hour waiting targets scrapped - Save our NHS!

Health workers marching on the demo for the NHS, 4.3.17, photo Mary Finch

Health workers marching on the demo for the NHS, 4.3.17, photo Mary Finch   (Click to enlarge)

NHS nurse

NHS England is backing a plan to scrap four-hour A&E waiting time targets 'within a year'.

The current target is for 95% of patients to be seen at A&E within four hours.

Ditching this will mean that many patients with so-called 'less serious' illnesses could be forced to wait for well over four hours - which is already a long time!

The government has previously talked about the idea and doctors warned that getting rid of the target would have a "near-catastrophic impact" on patient safety.

A&E staff have also expressed concerns about triaging - deciding the order in which patients are treated.

But, as I have seen in wards I have worked in, the current targets are already insufficient. Emergency units have not hit the target since July 2015 for example.

In Wales - where the target will not be scrapped - Maelor Hospital in Wrexham in January posted the worst waiting time for an accident and emergency unit in Wales on record. Only 49% of patients where seen in under four hours.

Instead of scrapping A&E targets we need a big increase in staff to meet patient demand.

We demand:

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In The Socialist 6 March 2019:


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