Northumbria NHS Trust top for A&E waiting times

Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital at Cramlington, which is run by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital at Cramlington, which is run by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has the best A&E waiting times in the country with 98.8 per cent of patients being treated or admitted within the national four-hour standard.

It is ranked number one out of 133 trusts for April for performance against the national standard of 95 per cent, representing a significant increase from March when it was 13th. The figures include The Northumbria at Cramlington, urgent care centres and minor injury units.

Ellie Monkhouse, executive director of nursing and midwifery at Northumbria Healthcare, said: “We are absolutely delighted to achieve 98.8 per cent and be the best performing trust in the country.

“Even during the extremely busy winter period, we were consistently one of the top trusts, however, we were always striving to do better to ensure more of our patients were seen earlier, and we are pleased to now be ranked first.

“It’s been a real team effort with all staff pulling together and making improvements in their area to improve the flow of patients from A&E, through the hospital and into the community, where appropriate, to ensure that their experience is as good as it possibly can be.

“I’d like to thank our staff who have responded brilliantly to the pressures on the NHS and social care services and really made a difference to our patients.

“While today’s figures are excellent, and a real boost to our teams, we will continue to focus our efforts on ensuring our patients are seen as quickly as possible by the right clinician and that they experience a smooth, and timely, journey through our care.

“Finally, I’d like to make a plea for people to continue to make use of GP and local pharmacy services to ensure that our A&E teams are there to treat those most in need.”

Over the last few weeks, the trust has made changes at The Northumbria hospital to improve the flow of patients in its emergency department which has included creating an environment to better support the handover of patients from ambulances and a new zone to treat those who do not require admission to hospital.