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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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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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