The Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading is urging patients to only visit if it's a REAL emergency after the casualty department has seen its busiest weeks of the year so far.
Usually, A&E staff treat around 250 to 280 people across Saturdays and Sundays. But last weekend there were around 350 people wanting attention. Kate Bunkall has our report.
The new boss of a Health Trust hasn't ruled out closing an Accident and Emergency Department. Matthew Kershaw has been appointed the Chief Executive of East Kent Hospitals NHS Trust, which has three main sites in Ashford, Canterbury and Margate and two smaller hospitals in Dover and Folkestone. The Trust is currently in special measures but Mr Kershaw believes he can turn fortunes around. Tom Savvides reports.
A water leak that occurred in the early hours of this morning meant the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading, lost power in Battle and North Block of the hospital, which also resulted in power outage. Areas affected included our elderly care wards, critical care unit, stroke unit and some outpatient areas.
Mary Sherry, Chief Operating Officer for Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, said:
Hospitals in east Kent are currently extremely busy, caring for large numbers of people who are seriously ill.
The onset of winter weather has resulted in a surge in attendances at A&E particularly by older people and people with lung problems, many of whom need to be admitted for inpatient care.
The NHS has robust plans to provide the right treatment for people who are seriously ill but is appealing to people who don’t have a serious or life-threatening illness or injury to avoid going to A&E and to seek care elsewhere.
It is estimated that between 15 and 25 per cent of people attending A&E could be treated by another NHS service.
If you have a health problem and are not sure what to do or who to contact, please use the Health Help Now web app which lists services and gives health advice and information for east Kent: www.healthhelpnow-nhs.net.
If you need medical help fast but it is not a 999 emergency, ring NHS 111.
East Kent Hospitals covering Ashford, Canterbury and Margate are struggling to cope with patients coming to Accident and Emergency. It's particularly bad at the Kent and Canterbury where they're dealing with almost 200 patients a day.
That's double the usual number. NHS Managers say only people with life-threatening and serious illnesses should go to A and E.