Relatives urged to collect Lancaster hospital patients on time

Lancaster Royal Infirmary Hospital.
Accident and Emergency.
Lancaster Royal Infirmary Hospital. Accident and Emergency.

Health bosses in Lancaster and Morecambe are asking the friends and relatives of patients to pick them up as quickly as possible to avoid bed blocking.

University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust (UHMBT) have made another call to the public to consider using other healthcare services rather than A&E to help reduce pressure on the department.

But they are also calling on people to help them discharge patients as quicker.

A spokeswoman from the trust said that sometimes patients are discharged at 12pm, but are not being picked from hospital up until after 5pm, causing delays for other patients who need care.

She also appealed to family members and friends to check on people more often when they are discharged, to help avoid re-admission to hospital.

David Walker, medical director at UHMBT), said: “We are currently experiencing increased operational pressure at FGH and RLI, and we are calling on the public and staff to again help us.

“Members of the public are asked to please help us make sure our staff are free to treat those most in need, such as those who have a serious illness or injury.

“Whilst we will see and treat all patients who attend, there are those who could be better treated elsewhere.

“We know it can be difficult when someone is unwell so if you aren’t sure whether or not to attend the A&E, please ring the NHS advice line on 111 who are trained to help.

“If you have a minor illness or injury that needs attention, you can visit your nearest pharmacist, Primary Care Assessment Centre, or speak to your GP.

“If you do attend, please be patient with staff who are doing their best in difficult circumstances.”

Mr Walker added: “If your friend or relative is medically fit to be discharged from hospital you can help facilitate their discharge by supporting them to settle in at home.

“This will help to release pressures in the hospital.”

Mr Walker also appealed for any UHMBT registered nurses or clinical support workers who are available to work to call the hospital’s switchboard on 01539 732288 and speak to the clinical site manager.