Hospital A&E wards ‘in crisis over shortage of emergency doctors’

Hospital accident and emergency wards are in crisis as the supply of doctors fails to keep pace with demand for them in A&E departments according to medics’ representatives.

The warning from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine came as an A&E in the east Midlands announced it may have to temporarily close its doors at night owing to a national shortage of emergency doctors.

United Lincolnshire hospitals NHS trust (ULHT) said that a “crisis point” had been reached and patients’ lives could be put at risk if action was not taken at Grantham and District hospital.

Management at ULHT said they were looking to reduce A&E hours because the department was facing a severe shortage of doctors.

The trust, which runs the A&E, as well as two others in the region, said that it had been seriously affected by a “national shortage of appropriately trained doctors to work in A&Es”, adding: “We have reached a crisis point and we may put patients at risk if we don’t act.”

Full story in The Guardian 10 August 2016