The second programme last Wednesday provided nail-biting suspense just like the first.What the surgeons said in their comments and their attitudes was very telling. One said bitterly: "I just wish someone would tell me when I can get on with my job!" And this week another said that it didn't matter that tens of thousands had just been wasted because there was no ICU bed available for their patient and so the surgery had to be postponed: the surgery was the right thing to do for this patient! The team was assembled four weeks later.What this series shows us is how inefficient and wasteful of resources it is to have an underfunded acute service. The bottleneck here is the supply of ICU beds: we need to devise a system to provide more ICU beds in the winter. And more HDU and step-down beds and better discharge arrangements, yes I know.....But the pressure on the A&Es at St Mary's and Charing Cross predates the winter: neither A&E has met the 4 hours treat or discharge target at any time in 2016.With demand going up by 5% per year, but funding by only 1% the outcome is inevitable.
Una-Jane Winfield ● 2586d0 Comments