- 4 updates
Improvements in working conditions in A&E will go ahead if recommended by NHS chiefs and not from independent research, the Government has said.
Despite a damning survey showing 62% of emergency doctors thought their job was unsustainable in its current form, the Department of Health decided to wait for Sir Bruce Keogh's report.
Making consultancy in emergency medicine more attractive as a career needs to be "a matter of priority" if A&E services are to continue, the Royal College of Physicians has said.
Dr Andrew Goddard hit out at current provisions in the wake of research showing how understaffed A&E is becoming - 21 emergency medicine consultants emigrated in the last year alone.
Patients are not seeing their doctors quickly enough because the demands on staff are too great, it has emerged.
- The number of A&E units failing to meet the Government four-hour target has almost trebled in a year.
- Some 39 departments failed to meet the target of seeing 95% of patients within four hours during the period July to September, compared with 14 units during the same period in 2012, according to NHS England data.
The Government must act quickly if hospital emergency departments are to remain safe and open, doctors have warned.
The College of Emergency Medicine (CEM) said that A&Es were facing "intolerable pressures" after it emerged 62% of emergency doctors said they did not believe their job was sustainable.
Almost all of the 1,077 doctors quizzed by CEM admitted to working more than their contracted hours - a staggering 94% said they had continued to work to help maintain levels of service.
There is also a concerning lack of consultant doctors to supervise younger colleagues.
The CEM report said: "The results show a worrying trend. Increasing numbers of consultants who have been trained by the NHS are choosing to use their skills abroad."