'Critical incident' as four hospitals in Greater Manchester affected by IT failures

A major IT failure is causing 'severe' delays and disruption for patients at four hospitals in Greater Manchester.

The 'critical incident' is affecting digital systems at Royal Oldham Hospital, Fairfield in Bury, Rochdale Infirmary and North Manchester General Hospital. Salford Royal is unaffected.

The Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust say the issues are causing delays and adding to wait times across services such as outpatient, diagnostic tests and scans.

Health bosses have apologised to patients and ask the public to "think carefully" before going to A&E as "they are likely to be waiting longer than normal."

The trust say the digital IT team "continues to investigate the issues".

Deputy CEO and Chief Medical Officer for the Northern Care Alliance NHS Trust, Dr Chris Brookes, said they are "working hard to resolve the significant IT issues."

He said: "This means that our clinical teams are continuing to rely on our robust contingency plans for such critical incidents.

"All patient records and personal data held by the NHS and Trust remains secure and unaffected.

“Patients who have a hospital appointment whether for planned surgery or as an outpatient should continue to attend unless they are contacted directly by the Trust and told otherwise.

“Our Emergency Departments are particularly busy at the moment. For those who feel they need to attend our emergency departments, they are likely to be waiting longer than normal if they have minor ailments.

"We are asking the public to think carefully before attending. We would, as always, recommend that you contact NHS 111 or seek advice from your local pharmacy or GP.”