All beds full and 'excessive A&E delays' at Portsmouth's QA Hospital

The QA Hospital in Portsmouth said it is seeing record numbers of patients to the Emergency Department. Credit: ITV Meridian

All beds are full at the QA Hospital in Portsmouth and the A&E department is experiencing what's being described as 'excessive delays.'

The Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust has now declared a critical incident due to 'extreme and sustained pressure on all services across Portsmouth and South East Hampshire.'

The Emergency Department is currently full with patients requiring a bed, leaving no space for emergency treatment.

The trust said there are record numbers of patients attending A&E arriving both by ambulance and walk-in patients. And there has been a 'significant increase' in patients with COVID-19 and flu.

Dr John Knighton, Medical Director at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust, said: "The Emergency Department is full of patients requiring admission to the hospital resulting in long delays for patients arriving by ambulance.

"The length of delays being experienced and the lack of capacity to treat emergencies puts patient safety at significant risk. That is why we have declared a critical incident today - to prioritise emergency capacity for the treatment of emergency patients only.

All beds are currently full at Portsmouth's Queen Alexandra Hospital. Credit: ITV Meridian

“We apologise for the delays accessing urgent services, but rest assured we are doing everything in our power to meet the need.

"We need the local community to help us by helping patients get home as soon as possible and only using the Emergency Department for life threatening conditions and injuries.

“Our immediate priority is to ensure there are beds available for our most seriously ill patients and we will be focusing on safely discharging as many patients as possible. We ask that families and loved ones support us with this and collect patients as soon as they are ready to be discharged.

“We also urge you to not attend the ED unless it’s an emergency. Non-emergency attendances cannot be seen and we advise people to visit NHS 111 online."The Trust will be reviewing the situation regularly and thanks the community for its support during this difficult and busy time."