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Delays likely at Auckland Hospital Emergency Dept.

MEDIA RELEASE
Auckland DHB
6 September 2004
Delays likely at Auckland City Hospital Emergency Department

Auckland City Hospital is warning that patients may face long delays at its Emergency Department.

The recent cold weather and a late season rise in influenza cases has meant an influx of acutely ill patients and, in common with other Auckland hospitals, Auckland City Hospital has been extremely full for the last week and a half.

Illness among staff has worsened an existing staff shortage, which has reduced the number of beds available on wards.

As a result, there is a backlog of patients in the Emergency Department who are waiting for admission to wards.

In order to cope with acute patients, the hospital has had to cancel a small number of elective (non-urgent) surgery cases (5) scheduled for today. A decision will be made later this afternoon on whether to cancel elective surgery scheduled for tomorrow.

Auckland City Hospital is asking patients with minor ailments to go to their family doctor or a medical centre, rather than the hospital’s Emergency Department.

The children’s emergency department at Starship is also very busy and there may be long delays for less urgent cases at peak times.

ENDS

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