1. ITV Report

Plea for only emergency cases to go to Northants hospitals

A busy Christmas has increased pressure at Northampton Hospital Photo: ITV News Anglia

The public are being asked to stay away from Northampton and Kettering hospitals unless absolutely necessary and to use other NHS services following a surge in demand over the holiday period.

Attendances at both hospitals have increased substantially over the Christmas and New Year break which has caused significant pressures in both A&E departments.

As a result what managers describe as " an unusually large number of patients who are acutely ill and need high priority hospital care are having to be treated"

At the same time a large number of patients are continuing to attend A&E departments with minor injuries and illnesses for which they could be treated elsewhere.

Dr Matthew Davies from NHS Nene Clinical Commissioning Group said:

A busy Christmas has increased pressure at Kettering Hospital Credit: ITV News Anglia

"During the Christmas and New Year break pressures on the local health service have been building.

The most serious impact has been an increased need to admit people with significant medical problems to hospital for specialist care.

This has put pressure on hospital beds at a time when all NHS services are also very busy.

The public play a very important role though in the appropriate use of NHS services. They can help us to ease pressure on hospitals by only using A&E when there is a real emergency.

For anything less they should be looking to get advice from their local GP, by using the Corby Urgent Care Centre, by using NHS 111 or by asking their local pharmacist for advice.

– Dr Matthew Davies NHS Nene Clinical Commissioning Group