Survey on future of Pontefract A&E gets 2,000 responses

More than 2,000 people took part in a survey on the future of Pontefract A&E after plans emerged to downgrade the department.

Thursday, 14th September 2017, 4:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th September 2017, 11:38 am

NHS bosses asked Healthwatch Wakefield, the district’s health and social care watchdog, to carry out an online study into services at the town’s hosptial.

It was launched after NHS bosses said they could cease 24-7 A&E provision at Pontefract and turn the department into an urgent care centre for people with minor ailments.

Emergencies would instead go to Pinderfields Hospital, which already takes A&E patients from Pontefract if they need to be admitted.

Results of the survey will now be analysed and a report published.

Healthwatch Wakefield said on Twitter: “A massive thank you to the 2,077 people who took part in our survey on urgent care at Pontefract Hospital. The report will be out soon.”

Fears have been raised over longer travel times to A&E and whether Pinderfields could cope with more emergency patients if the plan for Pontefract goes ahead.

Currently, the A&E is staffed by Mid Yorkshire doctors and nurses between 8am and 10pm. Overnight it is staffed by GPs and specialist nurses.

NHS bosses said they wanted to make the best use of resources after the contract to run the current Pontefract A&E service ends next March.

Healthwatch also held consultation events at markets, libraries, hospitals, GP practices, bus stations and community centres

The Pontefract proposal follows a shake-up which saw Dewsbury’s A&E turned into an urgent care centre.

An expanded Pinderfields A&E starting taking the most serious emergencies from North Kirklees last week.