New figures have revealed that thousands of patients across Northumberland and North Tyneside are benefiting from a new model of emergency care that was introduced in the summer.
With access to dedicated diagnostics round-the-clock and early intervention from specialist consultants, which are in place seven days a week at the Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital near Cramlington, more people who are seriously ill or injured are now getting the right treatment sooner – with many not needing to stay in hospital at all.
Initial data for the first four months since the Northumbria hospital opened shows that around 1,500 fewer people have been admitted to hospital than in the same period last year.
This is largely a result of quick decision-making from emergency medicine consultants, who are on site 24/7 providing senior clinical input, as well as rapidly available results of tests and scans so that consultant specialists can start treatment straight-away.
Of those who are admitted as an emergency, more patients are now going home earlier. The figures show that more than 70 per cent of them stayed in hospital for less than three days – an increase on the same period last year.
Dr Chris Biggin, clinical director of emergency care at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The driving force behind our changes to emergency care was to improve the clinical outcomes for our most seriously ill and injured patients.
“The early evidence is a ringing endorsement of the new model and our teams, who are working extremely hard to treat increasing numbers of people as quickly as possible.”