Blackburn A&E is north west's busiest for 'blue light' calls

First published in Blackburn Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Local government reporter

ROYAL Blackburn Hospital receives more ‘blue-light’ ambulances than any other in the North West, it has been revealed.

Vehicles had been queueing up outside the accident and emergency unit waiting for treatment for lengthy periods.

But the hospital and ambulance service have brought in an action plan to cut down admission delays and a new £9million emergency unit at Burnley General is expected to relieve pressure on the Royal Blackburn when it opens in September.

The shock fact the unit receives more emergency vehicles than casualty departments at other major hospitals in the North West, including in Manchester, Liverpool and Preston, was revealed to Hyndburn MP Graham Jones when he met ambulance chiefs.

He said: “I was surprised to learn this, but I knew from constituents that the Royal Blackburn A and E unit was under heavy pressure.

“I heard reports of ambulances queueing up outside for unacceptably long periods. Even police cars have been bringing in cases because of the pressure.

“There are centres for urgent care and a minor injuries in Burnley, Accrington and Clitheroe but the Royal Blackburn receives blue-light ambulances from right across East Lancashire.

“We know there are real problems with poor health in the area which this reflects. In December, the ambulance service and hospital put in place procedures to speed up admission and reduce the wait for ambulances.”

A spokeswoman for the North West Ambulance Service said: “Royal Blackburn Hospital receives the highest number of patients via the ambulance service in the North West. A great deal of work has been undertaken by the hospital trust, along with ourselves, to improve patient handover procedures.

“Measures put in place have seen a continuous improvement.”

She said there were emergency ‘stand-by’ procedures where paramedics informed medical staff of time-critical patients to ensure immediate treatment.

Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle said: “This pressure on Royal Blackburn’s A and E shows the decision to close the casualty unit at Burnley General in 2007 was wrong.

“The new upgraded emergency unit at Burnley with ambulance bays, due to open in September, should relieve the pressure.”

Comments (12)

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4:24pm Wed 13 Feb 13

mavrick says...

It may have gone unnoticed that the R.B.H has the only A&E department for a wide area. I am afraid the utopian ideal of a super teaching hospital has turned out to be the disaster everyone said it would be. Big is not beautiful.
It may have gone unnoticed that the R.B.H has the only A&E department for a wide area. I am afraid the utopian ideal of a super teaching hospital has turned out to be the disaster everyone said it would be. Big is not beautiful. mavrick
  • Score: 12

4:41pm Wed 13 Feb 13

oracle999 says...

A little more food for thought, it has not been reported that on New Year's Eve there were no ambulances available across burnley, rossendale and pendle for almost 3 hours. That is fact! Also why is the busiest a and e in the north west situated in portacabins next to a very very expensive super hospital? NHS are appalling at managing, don't get me wrong, the front line staff do a marvellous job under immense pressure but from an outsider looking in, the only worse managers I can see work for blackburn rovers
A little more food for thought, it has not been reported that on New Year's Eve there were no ambulances available across burnley, rossendale and pendle for almost 3 hours. That is fact! Also why is the busiest a and e in the north west situated in portacabins next to a very very expensive super hospital? NHS are appalling at managing, don't get me wrong, the front line staff do a marvellous job under immense pressure but from an outsider looking in, the only worse managers I can see work for blackburn rovers oracle999
  • Score: 6

5:43pm Wed 13 Feb 13

burner says...

Rocket science . . . . work it out !! ONE hospital , MANY square miles, BIG population. . . . . . now why did no-one think of this before.
.
" Hello subscriber, what is your emergency?"
.
" I have an acute bout of sarcasm , made worse by regional planners !! "
Rocket science . . . . work it out !! ONE hospital , MANY square miles, BIG population. . . . . . now why did no-one think of this before. . " Hello subscriber, what is your emergency?" . " I have an acute bout of sarcasm , made worse by regional planners !! " burner
  • Score: 3

5:47pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Sajdin says...

A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins.

Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley?

Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news !
A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins. Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley? Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news ! Sajdin
  • Score: 2

5:50pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Pinky&theBrain says...

Totally agree with you Oracle999, but what id Gordon Birtwistle on? Ambulance bays at a UCC Burnley? what good will that do when the A&E is 25 minutes away at Royal Blackburn? I smell smoke screen with the politicians scraping the barrel for good news stories while the managers in this excuse for a hospital chase their tails to cover up the fact that more people die in this hospital than in most hospitals in the UK, All we hear about these days are A&E patients in the wrong place being told that they should see their GP, well if the A&E staff can't cope with the work and GPs have no appointments either lump them all together on that pile of **** on the hill - then patients will be seen - or get shut of them all and get someone in who can sort this mess out. Who really gives a toss about ambulances - that place needs a shake up, Perhaps Oracle 999's right, we should get the chicken farmers in - they can't do any worse,
Totally agree with you Oracle999, but what id Gordon Birtwistle on? Ambulance bays at a UCC Burnley? what good will that do when the A&E is 25 minutes away at Royal Blackburn? I smell smoke screen with the politicians scraping the barrel for good news stories while the managers in this excuse for a hospital chase their tails to cover up the fact that more people die in this hospital than in most hospitals in the UK, All we hear about these days are A&E patients in the wrong place being told that they should see their GP, well if the A&E staff can't cope with the work and GPs have no appointments either lump them all together on that pile of **** on the hill - then patients will be seen - or get shut of them all and get someone in who can sort this mess out. Who really gives a toss about ambulances - that place needs a shake up, Perhaps Oracle 999's right, we should get the chicken farmers in - they can't do any worse, Pinky&theBrain
  • Score: 0

5:54pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Mikeee47 says...

Sajdin wrote:
A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins.

Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley?

Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news !
Cant you read?? the new A&E opens in September, and YES A&E is in portacabins as a walk in patient, as is the waiting room,, disgraceful, been worn the tee shirt dont want it back.
like mentioned above the Doctors and Nursing staff work the hardest to give you the best care, but come on the Trust managers dont know what they're doing
[quote][p][bold]Sajdin[/bold] wrote: A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins. Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley? Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news ![/p][/quote]Cant you read?? the new A&E opens in September, and YES A&E is in portacabins as a walk in patient, as is the waiting room,, disgraceful, been worn the tee shirt dont want it back. like mentioned above the Doctors and Nursing staff work the hardest to give you the best care, but come on the Trust managers dont know what they're doing Mikeee47
  • Score: 0

7:02pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Sajdin says...

Mikeee47 wrote:
Sajdin wrote:
A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins.

Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley?

Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news !
Cant you read?? the new A&E opens in September, and YES A&E is in portacabins as a walk in patient, as is the waiting room,, disgraceful, been worn the tee shirt dont want it back.
like mentioned above the Doctors and Nursing staff work the hardest to give you the best care, but come on the Trust managers dont know what they're doing
Mikeee47, sorry I think we both getting confused here. They building a new UCC at BGH which this paper has called it as a "emergency unit". They also building a new UCC at RBH where currently there is portacabins, in order to get rid of them.

So new UCC sites at both RBH and BGH.
[quote][p][bold]Mikeee47[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sajdin[/bold] wrote: A&E is not located in portacabins, UCC at RBH is, and the new UCC is currently being built at RBH to replace the portacabins. Also what happened to the MP's promise on our doorsteps of bringing back A&E to Burnley? Also why is this newspaper obsessed with the NHS recently. Trying every effort to put it into a bad light, stop being biased and report some good news ![/p][/quote]Cant you read?? the new A&E opens in September, and YES A&E is in portacabins as a walk in patient, as is the waiting room,, disgraceful, been worn the tee shirt dont want it back. like mentioned above the Doctors and Nursing staff work the hardest to give you the best care, but come on the Trust managers dont know what they're doing[/p][/quote]Mikeee47, sorry I think we both getting confused here. They building a new UCC at BGH which this paper has called it as a "emergency unit". They also building a new UCC at RBH where currently there is portacabins, in order to get rid of them. So new UCC sites at both RBH and BGH. Sajdin
  • Score: 0

7:55pm Wed 13 Feb 13

robert mug says...

Problems! what problems? we dont have any problems at all. All is well here at RBH just ask the bosses and managers( an awful lot of them too,and overpaid).
God these rose tinted glasses are hurting now!
Problems! what problems? we dont have any problems at all. All is well here at RBH just ask the bosses and managers( an awful lot of them too,and overpaid). God these rose tinted glasses are hurting now! robert mug
  • Score: -1

10:02pm Wed 13 Feb 13

burner says...

Nurse . . . another sarcasm patient arriving !
Nurse . . . another sarcasm patient arriving ! burner
  • Score: -1

11:22pm Wed 13 Feb 13

retsofad says...

The Hospital trust was told in 2007 that closing the A&E at Burnley General Hospital would result in people not being able to receive full medical treatment when travelling all the way to Blackburn Royal because and this hospital would not be able to cope with the huge volume of patients arriving. I don't blame the doctors or nursing staff for this failure it is down to the bosses who tried to convince the public at meeting held around the area that this was the right decision. the public would have non of this but they went ahead and followed their nose which grew longer and longer as time past. this was nothing but a budget cut that has resulted in many residents of this area dying through lack of medical treatment. The Trust is now under investigation as to why the number of deaths are so high. IT IS TIME THAT A FULL A&E WAS RETURNED TO BURNLEY WITH FULL MEDICAL EQUIPMENT AND STAFF TO CATER FOR ALL EMERGENCY PATIENTS.
The Hospital trust was told in 2007 that closing the A&E at Burnley General Hospital would result in people not being able to receive full medical treatment when travelling all the way to Blackburn Royal because and this hospital would not be able to cope with the huge volume of patients arriving. I don't blame the doctors or nursing staff for this failure it is down to the bosses who tried to convince the public at meeting held around the area that this was the right decision. the public would have non of this but they went ahead and followed their nose which grew longer and longer as time past. this was nothing but a budget cut that has resulted in many residents of this area dying through lack of medical treatment. The Trust is now under investigation as to why the number of deaths are so high. IT IS TIME THAT A FULL A&E WAS RETURNED TO BURNLEY WITH FULL MEDICAL EQUIPMENT AND STAFF TO CATER FOR ALL EMERGENCY PATIENTS. retsofad
  • Score: 4

12:07pm Thu 14 Feb 13

Blue-tonic says...

Nhs 111 has a lot to answer for, they refer nearly every caller to 999. My child had a chest infection ,I needed some anti biotics but hey guess what they said an ambulance is being sent. I said I can take my child to hospital myself , I have transport, they said too late it's on its way. What a shambles I'm sure I weren't the only one in that situation
Nhs 111 has a lot to answer for, they refer nearly every caller to 999. My child had a chest infection ,I needed some anti biotics but hey guess what they said an ambulance is being sent. I said I can take my child to hospital myself , I have transport, they said too late it's on its way. What a shambles I'm sure I weren't the only one in that situation Blue-tonic
  • Score: 2

5:08am Fri 15 Feb 13

woolywords says...

I bided my time before answering this article, to allow you to vent your spleen. So that you would know about the meaning of life..

When I was in the Army, the call, 'man down' meant something to me, as a soldier.
You did anything, everything, to make sure that, that man, as soon as possible, got out of there.
He'd done his bit, game over.
It's what you do.

However, the perverse, is the case in Burnley...
Me and my mate, Tell, are in a Chinese takeaway shop and, after a couple of minutes, Trumpton turn up.

Now don't get me wrong, I like Firefighters..my Uncle Tom was one, but, they are entitled to a bit of stick, at times.
Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grubb, if you know what I mean..
However, it all went pear-shaped after that..

Me and him left it, walked a bit, found this bloke, down on the path.
He shouted, 'man down here..'
Not that it did any good.
I gave him my phone and did the A,B,C's, then recovery thing.
Trumpton came down and gave us a bit of a turn on the old CPR.
Plod turned up, had a bit of a do, themselves.
That CPR is hard work, trust me.

I'd done it before, in the Falklands.

My mate, Tell, is shouting at him, 'don't you fecking die on us, or I'll boot you to death...'. Great help.
pump, pump, pump, pump, pump.
breathe.

It really takes it out of you, doing that, as you wait for that ambulance.

Have no idea how long he had been down but, Trumpton said they had been that way before going to the the Chinese, and he wasn't there, then..
I checked my watch..

It had been 7 minutes since we found him..he could be OK.

The thing is, your natural thing to do is, help, when you should really, check your watch,
because there is this rule..

The Golden Hour.

If you can sustain a form of life within a person, shedloads of doctors can bring back life, within that golden hour..
Simple as that.

But if management bureaucrats, flock about with hospitals and A&E, your chances of survival are, basically stuffed.

Do the timings yourself, fall down..
Start the clock..
you have to be found, resuscitated,
worked upon, within 3 minutes or brain death is probable.
Tick tock
Someone dials 999.. takes an arm and leg to explain where you are..
Tick tock
Thankfully, the Plod turn up..
Tick tock
but are not trained in that, which you and your mate are doing..
Tick tock
Swearing at them, gives you, a new lease of life...
Tick tock
Pumping that heart may cause a few broken ribs..
Tick tock
Who cares?
Tick tock
The freaking traffic police are here...
Tick tock
pump, pump, pump, pump, pump
breathe...
Tick tock
Motorway cops are, awesome..

Whey hey..
ambulance is here..
Tick tock
They go for leads and stuff, ignoring our sweat..
Tick tock
you're doing a grand job, carry on..
Tick tock
tick tock
beeeeeeeeeeep..
this was Burnley, 2001.
He had but a few hundred yards to go, to live...


Which he did...
3 broken ribs, after a drunken fall.
Who'd have guessed?

We, me and him, were at it, for near 30 minutes, sweating our gonads off, keeping him alive.
And you want to give him another 20 minute ride to Blackburn?
I bided my time before answering this article, to allow you to vent your spleen. So that you would know about the meaning of life.. When I was in the Army, the call, 'man down' meant something to me, as a soldier. You did anything, everything, to make sure that, that man, as soon as possible, got out of there. He'd done his bit, game over. It's what you do. However, the perverse, is the case in Burnley... Me and my mate, Tell, are in a Chinese takeaway shop and, after a couple of minutes, Trumpton turn up. Now don't get me wrong, I like Firefighters..my Uncle Tom was one, but, they are entitled to a bit of stick, at times. Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grubb, if you know what I mean.. However, it all went pear-shaped after that.. Me and him left it, walked a bit, found this bloke, down on the path. He shouted, 'man down here..' Not that it did any good. I gave him my phone and did the A,B,C's, then recovery thing. Trumpton came down and gave us a bit of a turn on the old CPR. Plod turned up, had a bit of a do, themselves. That CPR is hard work, trust me. I'd done it before, in the Falklands. My mate, Tell, is shouting at him, 'don't you fecking die on us, or I'll boot you to death...'. Great help. pump, pump, pump, pump, pump. breathe. It really takes it out of you, doing that, as you wait for that ambulance. Have no idea how long he had been down but, Trumpton said they had been that way before going to the the Chinese, and he wasn't there, then.. I checked my watch.. It had been 7 minutes since we found him..he could be OK. The thing is, your natural thing to do is, help, when you should really, check your watch, because there is this rule.. The Golden Hour. If you can sustain a form of life within a person, shedloads of doctors can bring back life, within that golden hour.. Simple as that. But if management bureaucrats, flock about with hospitals and A&E, your chances of survival are, basically stuffed. Do the timings yourself, fall down.. Start the clock.. you have to be found, resuscitated, worked upon, within 3 minutes or brain death is probable. Tick tock Someone dials 999.. takes an arm and leg to explain where you are.. Tick tock Thankfully, the Plod turn up.. Tick tock but are not trained in that, which you and your mate are doing.. Tick tock Swearing at them, gives you, a new lease of life... Tick tock Pumping that heart may cause a few broken ribs.. Tick tock Who cares? Tick tock The freaking traffic police are here... Tick tock pump, pump, pump, pump, pump breathe... Tick tock Motorway cops are, awesome.. Whey hey.. ambulance is here.. Tick tock They go for leads and stuff, ignoring our sweat.. Tick tock you're doing a grand job, carry on.. Tick tock tick tock beeeeeeeeeeep.. this was Burnley, 2001. He had but a few hundred yards to go, to live... Which he did... 3 broken ribs, after a drunken fall. Who'd have guessed? We, me and him, were at it, for near 30 minutes, sweating our gonads off, keeping him alive. And you want to give him another 20 minute ride to Blackburn? woolywords
  • Score: 0

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