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A&E waits linked to longer stays


4 December 2014

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Patients admitted to A&E in their fourth hour of waiting have significantly longer stays than those admitted within the first three hours of attendance claims research.

A report written by the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) shows that in the year prior to August 2014, 17% of those admitted in their fourth hour stayed in hospital for two to three days.

Patients admitted to A&E in their fourth hour of waiting have significantly longer stays than those admitted within the first three hours of attendance claims research.

A report written by the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) shows that in the year prior to August 2014, 17% of those admitted in their fourth hour stayed in hospital for two to three days.

The provisional monthly hospital episode statistics (HES) for admitted patient care, outpatients and accident and emergency data report also showed that this dropped to 14% for those admitted within the first hour.

The data show 51%of patients admitted in the first hour were discharged the same day compared to 36% admitted in the fourth hour.

HSCIC chair Kingsley Manning said: “ Tracking a patient journey through A&E can be a powerful tool for secondary services and today’s report provides a new analysis of this.

“The relationship between length of hospital stay and the point at which a patient is admitted from A&E provides valuable insight for all involved in secondary care.”

More than half of admissions from an unplannedA&E attendance occurred in the fourth hour of which 44 % were admitted in the final ten minutes. A further 20% of attendances were admitted after the four hour period.

For those admissions recorded – falls, unexpected complications from surgery and intentional self-poisoning were the main reasons for a hospital admission via A&E. 

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