Accident and Emergency live

The NHS treats more than a million patients every 36 hours. The A&E at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham has seen a sharp increase in numbers and today ITV News examines what is happening in these units.

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More than four hours but no treatment for bite patient

Clare Stajlla was in A&E for four hours but decided to leave without treatment. Credit: ITV News

After a lot of tests Clare Stajlla headed home from the Queen Elizabeth A&E.

She had suffered a bite but was allergic to antibiotics - doctors at the A&E told her she could stay overnight for treatment and observation, but that it could mean up to a week in hospital.

She decided instead to wait and hope the bite healed without the need to be admitted and to avoid the possible side effects - which included kidney failure at the extreme end.

Clare had spent a little over four hours in A&E from check-in to leaving this evening.


Patient back in A&E for chest pains

Rhianna Wade came in with her friend Sarah-Jane Smith. Credit: ITV News

Rhianna Wade came in to A&E last week with chest pain. She had called an ambulance and was seen treated and discharged within four hours.

This time she walked in to the minor injuries clinic and was waiting for half an hour to be seen.

She said she wasn't sure what would happen next or when she would be seen.

Sting on foot is too uncomfortable to bear

Aysha Rafi's foot has swollen after a sting on Friday. Credit: ITV News

Aysha Rafi had a sting or a bite - she is not sure which - on her foot on Friday.

Over the weekend she noticed it swell up and by Tuesday it was throbbing to the point of severe discomfort.

This afternoon she went to a walk-in service which is part of a Boots pharmacy in Birmingham city centre.

Nurses there said she should come to A&E because the swelling was moving around the foot and away from the initial sting.

Aysha is now waiting to see a triage nurse.


Patient with severe sunburn calls 999

Joanne Goddard called 999 after suffering from severe sunburn for three days - she had been out enjoying the good weather over the weekend.

Joanne said she could not walk because her legs were so badly burned and that she was in a huge amount of pain.

Joanne Goddard has been suffering from severe sunburn for the last three days. Credit: ITV News

When asked if she had considered calling the new 111 number she said she had no idea what it was and would have been unlikely to use it.

Joanne had spoken to her GP but said that the surgery had been unhelpful and told her to use cream, which she had done, but that it made no difference so she called for an ambulance.

Woman, 82, could have blood clot in her leg

An 82-year-old woman who had come to A&E because she wasn't satisfied with her GP's treatment said staff here have told her she has a possible blood clot in her leg.

She earlier told ITV News that her doctor had advised treating her leg with aqueous cream but she had not seen an improvement in her condition.

She now has an appointment to see a specialist at the hospital tomorrow and is much happier with how her leg is being treated.

Clinical lead nurse signs off busy A&E shift

Mel Brown stands outside the entrance to the emergency department at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham. Credit: ITV

Mel Brown has just come to the end of her shift as clinical lead nurse for the trauma care and resuscitation team.

She says the past two days - on course to be the busiest in the unit's short history - show what strain the hospital could be under this summer.

"And it's not even the holidays yet," she adds.

The combination of GP referrals and patients coming straight to A&E with the expectation of a quick fix only adds to the pressure on resources.

"In some ways we're a victim of our own success," says Mel.

And the build up of major trauma patients arriving in the last few hours means the night shift will be even busier.

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