South Scotland

Dumfries Infirmary emergency waiting time rise probed

Dumfries Infirmary - Picture by Chris Newman
Image caption A rise in waiting times for accident and emergency patients is under investigation at the hospital

Hospital bosses are to investigate ways of tackling a marked rise in waiting times for accident and emergency patients at Dumfries Infirmary.

They say significant work is needed to improve performance in the department.

A&E waiting times at the site have been rising since the start of the year and struggling to meet treatment targets.

The flow of patients is now to be investigated in coming months by hospital officials and senior clinical staff in order to seek improvements.

The trend has left the department struggling to meet a government requirement of treating 98% of patients within four hours.

A snapshot of activity in April shows the compliance rate fell to 93%, with more than 250 patients remaining in the unit beyond the target time.

The longest wait recorded during that month was eight hours and 14 minutes.

The increase in the length of A&E stays is thought to be linked to a rise in medical patients being referred directly by GPs.

They often have to wait in casualty for a bed to become available on a general ward.

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