Concern about 'unsustainable' plans to close Chase Farm Hospital's A&E

The Save Chase Farm campaign group has spoken out about the “unsustainable” plans to close Chase Farm Hospital’s accident and emergency department.

Kieran McGregor, from Save Chase Farm, reacted with concern to new figures which show that the number of people waiting longer than four hours for a bed in A&E at Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals has soared in the past year.

Despite a fall in admissions, the number of people waiting more than four hours for a bed once they were admitted has more than doubled in a year.

Mr McGregor said: “This is further evidence that the plans to close Chase Farm are illogical and that the arguments for retaining the hospital remain overwhelming.

“We do not think that the plans are sustainable.

“If they close Chase Farm then Barnet Hospital will not be able to cope and people’s health will be jeopardized.”

The new figures for Barnet and Chase Farm NHS Hospital Trust show that 1,092 people had to wait more than four hours for a bed between January 1 and July 1 2012.

This compares to just 492 people in the same time period during 2011.

This increase in waiting times has come at a time when admissions have actually fallen.

In the first six months of 2012, 14,443 people were admitted to the A&Es compared to 15,754 in the first half of 2011.

The new figures from England NHS Hospital Trusts place Barnet and Chase Farm in the top ten per cent worst performing trusts in England for A&E waiting times.

Councillor Barry Rawlings, Labour’s health spokesman, said: “It is strange that the number of people waiting more than four hours for a bed has increased so much.

“It is not because there were more patients because the number of patients actually fell.

“Most hospital trusts have got worse but Barnet is particularly bad and this makes the closure of Chase Farm very worrying.

“If this happens the waiting times in Barnet Hospital’s A&E department will get even longer and more people will be left on trolleys while beds are made available.”

He added: “The figures show a very big jump in the number of people being left waiting in just one year.

“This must be due to a systemic problem and there is no reason for it to get any better.”

A statement from Barnet and Chase Farm Hospital Trust said: “It is true that there were more breaches in January to June 2012 than there were in January to June 2011.

“This is largely due to a particularly difficult January and February that we experienced in 2012.”

Barnet Hospital is preparing to receive extra visitors as two units at Chase Farm Hospital, in The Ridgeway, Enfield, are to be downgraded.

The accident and emergency department and the maternity service at the Enfield hospital are due to close, which means more patients will be relying on Barnet Hospital, in Wellhouse Lane.

The closure is part of the plan, approved by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, to shake-up hospital services with the aim of improvement and tackling inequality of health care.

Comments (4)

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11:17am Wed 22 Aug 12

dons24pelliparclose says...

In the comparable periods the weekly returns to Department of Health show that year on year that had been a 9.08% reduction in Type 1 (Blue Light) ambulance cases at Barnet and Chase Farm

On 16th June 2012 the Census 2011 figures were published and at the NHS North Central London Board Meeting on 20th June the Commissioners were requested to review the projected A and E service provision on the basis of the latest population statistics and the change of patient flows of Hertfordshire Patients who were attending Barnet General rather than Lister Hospital at Stevenage , A and E at Queen Elizabeth II at Welwyn having been closed as a result of reorganisation within the comparable period
In the comparable periods the weekly returns to Department of Health show that year on year that had been a 9.08% reduction in Type 1 (Blue Light) ambulance cases at Barnet and Chase Farm On 16th June 2012 the Census 2011 figures were published and at the NHS North Central London Board Meeting on 20th June the Commissioners were requested to review the projected A and E service provision on the basis of the latest population statistics and the change of patient flows of Hertfordshire Patients who were attending Barnet General rather than Lister Hospital at Stevenage , A and E at Queen Elizabeth II at Welwyn having been closed as a result of reorganisation within the comparable period dons24pelliparclose

11:30am Wed 22 Aug 12

dons24pelliparclose says...

Barnet General Hospital is a regional response. The LAST CALL is being made for those who wish to comment to London Borough of Barnet planners on the proposed plans for Barnet General Hospital, case B/01347/12, including the proposed 200 additional parking spaces, as the latest consultation period closes on 23rd August. The East and West Area planning sub-Committees for LBBarnet are due to meet on 5th September; The full Planning and Environment Commiittee is planned to meet on 19th September
Barnet General Hospital is a regional response. The LAST CALL is being made for those who wish to comment to London Borough of Barnet planners on the proposed plans for Barnet General Hospital, case B/01347/12, including the proposed 200 additional parking spaces, as the latest consultation period closes on 23rd August. The East and West Area planning sub-Committees for LBBarnet are due to meet on 5th September; The full Planning and Environment Commiittee is planned to meet on 19th September dons24pelliparclose

5:40pm Wed 22 Aug 12

dons24pelliparclose says...

From Enfield Advertiser...BCF will invest in the region of 400 additional members of clinical staff in order to implement the service changes at Chase Farm"

If many of the 400 staff additional staff are going to be employed at Barnet General , even with allowing for three shift operation, there will be little room in the new 200 space car park and staff will be overflowing into the patients/visitors car park.

The applicant has NEVER published a revised transport plan for B/01347/12

Quote: "The closure ...of the A and E at Chase Farm..."is part of the plan, approved by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, to shake-up hospital services with the aim of improvement and tackling inequality of health care" TRUE but what the NHS Officers forget to mention that Rt Hon Alan Johnson, Secretary of State Health made it a legal condition of improving public transport.. It has taken 4 years to get TfLbus route 307 to serve the hospital. That is little general help to those attending from Hertfordshire or being diverted to North Middlesex Hospital where proposals to extend bus route 318 and improve accessibility of bus route w6 have still to see the light of day
From Enfield Advertiser...BCF will invest in the region of 400 additional members of clinical staff in order to implement the service changes at Chase Farm" If many of the 400 staff additional staff are going to be employed at Barnet General , even with allowing for three shift operation, there will be little room in the new 200 space car park and staff will be overflowing into the patients/visitors car park. The applicant has NEVER published a revised transport plan for B/01347/12 Quote: "The closure ...of the A and E at Chase Farm..."is part of the plan, approved by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, to shake-up hospital services with the aim of improvement and tackling inequality of health care" TRUE but what the NHS Officers forget to mention that Rt Hon Alan Johnson, Secretary of State Health made it a legal condition of improving public transport.. It has taken 4 years to get TfLbus route 307 to serve the hospital. That is little general help to those attending from Hertfordshire or being diverted to North Middlesex Hospital where proposals to extend bus route 318 and improve accessibility of bus route w6 have still to see the light of day dons24pelliparclose

8:03pm Wed 22 Aug 12

Jon10 says...

We ought to close about half of London's A&E departments, leaving 24-hour minor injury centres where that happens, instead.

The remaining, expanded A&E departments can then have doctors who can gain greater expertise, with 24-hour access to staffed diagnostic equipment and to consultants - even at weekends!

The extra distance does not matter with modern ambulances and paramedics, who can stabilize patients.

Better to have a difficult journey to visit a patient who is still alive, than a more local visit to a mortuary.

Fight NHS cuts, and by all means have a campaign, but specify which other A&E(s) should close instead. Not all clinical decisions revolve around the size of the NHS budget.
We ought to close about half of London's A&E departments, leaving 24-hour minor injury centres where that happens, instead. The remaining, expanded A&E departments can then have doctors who can gain greater expertise, with 24-hour access to staffed diagnostic equipment and to consultants - even at weekends! The extra distance does not matter with modern ambulances and paramedics, who can stabilize patients. Better to have a difficult journey to visit a patient who is still alive, than a more local visit to a mortuary. Fight NHS cuts, and by all means have a campaign, but specify which other A&E(s) should close instead. Not all clinical decisions revolve around the size of the NHS budget. Jon10

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