A&E waits at Scotland's largest children's hospital hit record high

The Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow recently saw 306 children present at A&E in just one day.

A&E waiting times at Scotland’s largest children’s hospital in Glasgow hit record high Royal Hospital for Children

Emergency department waiting times at Scotland’s largest children’s hospital have hit a record high, figures show.

At the Royal Hospital for Children Glasgow, 71.5% of attendances were seen and admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours – the worst figures on record.

It comes after the hospital urged parents to avoid A&E after record attendances saw 306 children present in one day.

Nearly 500 children waited for more than four hours, while 17 waited for more than eight, in the week ending November 20.

It comes as waiting times performance across Scotland’s A&E departments plummeted to a record low again.

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, located in Govan, Glasgow, recorded the worst figures of any individual hospital.iStock

At the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, just 35.1% of attendees were dealt with within the four-hour target – the worst of any individual hospital recorded, according to figures from Public Health Scotland.

The Scottish Government’s target aims to admit, transfer or discharge 95% of patients within four hours.

Across the country, for the week ending November 20, performance against the target fell to 63.1%.

This is the same record low recorded at the end of October, figures from Public Health Scotland (PHS) show.

Figures had been increasing, with 65.3% recorded last week, and 65.1% from November 6.

The number of people attending A&E departments fell slightly to 25,465, a fall of 815 from the week ending November 13.

However, heath secretary Humza Yousaf has warned the NHS is facing its most difficult winter to date.

Some 3,013 patients spent more than eight hours in A&E last week, while 1,062 waited more than 12 hours.

Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary Dr Sandesh Gulhane MSP, said the figures show the NHS is heading for “a truly terrifying winter”.

“More and more lives are being put on the line every single week in A&E under this health secretary,” he said.

“We are still yet to hit December yet he’s presided over yet another deplorable set of stats.

“The figures for Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow are especially horrendous – the worst ever for any individual hospital with just 35.1% of patients seen within four hours.

“This is completely unacceptable and incredibly alarming for the safety of patients and staff at the hospital.”

Yousaf admitted emergency department performance was not on target.

Responding to the figures, Yousaf said: “Covid continues to impact the performance of services and pandemic backlogs, Brexit-driven staff shortages, and inflation costs have all contributed to make this winter the most challenging the NHS has ever faced.

“Despite this, I am clear that A&E performance is not where it needs to be.

“Delayed discharge continues to be the single biggest factor driving up A&E waits and we are working hard to ensure people are leaving hospital without delay, freeing up vital beds for those who need them most.

“A key focus of our winter plan is on social care and actions to encourage authorities to help ease delays.

“Our £600m winter plan will see us recruit 1,000 new NHS staff and our £50m urgent and unscheduled care collaborative looks to drive down A&E waits through scheduled urgent appointments, hospital at home and directing people to the most appropriate care.”

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