Waiting goes on and on at hospital

PATIENTS still have to wait too long for operations at Ipswich Hospital it has been revealed.At the end of January there were nearly 8,000 people on the waiting list for both day cases and inpatient operations.

PATIENTS still have to wait too long for operations at Ipswich Hospital it has been revealed.

At the end of January there were nearly 8,000 people on the waiting list for both day cases and inpatient operations.

This left the hospital with 1,176 people more than was planned still waiting for their operation.

Day case operations are causing the biggest problems with the hospital being 984 behind target for January and 1,159 behind for the end of the year.


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Some operations also had to be cancelled and during January 36 patients were told on the day that their operations could not take place – 23 of those were for non-clinical reasons.

Between October and December 109 operations were cancelled and the hospital failed to re-admit 20 patients within 28 days of their cancellation on the day of surgery as Government targets require.

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The hospital is striving to meet waiting time targets and has already reached some of them, such as suspected cancer patients waiting no longer than two weeks for a consultation and there are also no patients waiting more than 15 months for an operation.

But the lack of space and more and more people being treated has meant that some patients have been unlucky.

The targets are supposed to be achieved by the end of March and the hospital is confident it can achieve those.

Waiting times in the Accident and Emergency department are also still not up to the target of 90 per cent of patients being seen in less than four hours.

However new working practices such as doctors being placed in casualty to make assessments as patients come through the doors have shown to be working and in January nearly 84 per cent of patients were seen in that time.

Jan Rowsell, spokeswoman for the hospital said that they were working extremely hard to meet all their targets.

She said: "Thanks to the immense hard work by all our staff we are hopeful that we will achieve all our targets by the end of March.

"The last thing we want to be is complacent although we are unable to predict the amount of emergency and urgent care cases that might come through our doors."

With regards to the cancelled operations Ms Rowsell said: "One cancelled operation is one too many for us.

"We are truly sorry that we have no other option than to cancel operations because of the sheer number needing urgent and emergency care.

"We apologise in person to anyone who has their operation cancelled and have and will continue to publicly apologise.

"With the wonderful news that we have been given the go-ahead for the new treatment centre and with the building of a temporary ward starting in April there is light at the end of the tunnel."

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