Birmingham & Black Country

Heart of England NHS Trust 'must improve waiting times'

An NHS trust that runs three West Midlands hospitals has been warned it needs to improve waiting times in A&E.

The Heart of England NHS Trust has failed to meet national targets at Good Hope and Heartlands hospitals, health regulator Monitor said.

National figures revealed last week showed 88% of patients were seen within four hours.

Monitor said the trust had been given legally binding undertakings to improve.

'Strengthen performance'

The Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust runs Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield, Solihull Hospital and community services and the Birmingham Chest Clinic.

Under national targets, all A&E patients should be seen within four hours.

The trust has pledged to strengthen performance in urgent and emergency care and tackle pressures on waiting times, improve how it manages urgent care and bring in external experts to advise about urgent care.

On Monday, the trust said it had brought in extra doctors at Heartlands Hospital after struggling to cope with demands on its A&E department.

Dr Aidan McNamara, from the emergency medicine department at the hospital, said: "There's always pressure.

"We look at it [waiting time targets] as an important performance standard and it reflects on the whole of the healthcare system."

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