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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Emergency departments at north Cumbria's hospitals back to normal

Emergency departments are “busy” but back to normal at north Cumbria’s hospitals.

Mike Walker photo
Mike Walker

Patients were reportedly left waiting up to 10 hours for admittance from the accident and emergency department into the Cumberland Infirmary, Carlisle, earlier in the month.

Pressure for space meant some people were transferred to the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven for treatment.

Hospital bosses are now urging the public to play their part and only attend A&E in an emergency.

Mike Walker, medical director at North Cumbria University Hospitals, said: “I would like to encourage people to make sure that they choose the right service and help our teams to cope.”

One staff member at the infirmary described the accident and emergency department earlier this month as being “like a field hospital”, with “people lying all over the place”.

North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust, which runs the two hospitals, admitted it was under pressure but said at the time it could not find any one reason for the increase in admissions.

However, a spokeswoman for the trust this week said that its two accident and emergency departments are both “busy, but nothing out of the norm for this time of year”.

Staff are now encouraging residents to heed the Choose Well campaign, which reminds people only to come to hospital or dial 999 in an emergency. To find out other service options, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47.

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