Extra staff called in to Royal A&E

Extra staff called in to Royal A&E

The Belfast Trust has said that there have been pressures on emergency departments across Northern Ireland in the past 24 hours, including at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast.

In a statement, the trust said that there are no plans to call a major incident, but "several escalation measures" have been put in place.These include "opening more beds throughout the Trust and calling in extra staff.""We are monitoring the situation very closely on an almost hourly basis and hope to see an improvement in the next few hours," the statement concluded.In January, a major incident was declared at the Royal when an extreme backlog caused 12-hour trolley waits requiring extra staff to be called in, and sparking a protest by union workers.Also that month, official figures revealed that waiting times had increased at the hospital's A&E department.Between October and December 2013, the number of patients that waited longer than 12 hours in emergency departments in NI more than doubled from 77 to 168. The statistics noted that, in particular, performance declined markedly at the Royal Victoria Hospital between that period with the figure jumping from 21 to 79.The current ministerial target for emergency care waiting times states that no patient attending any A&E department should wait more than 12 hours to be either treated and discharged, or admitted.

© UTV

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