Socialist Worker

NHS staff crisis shuts A&E

by Julie Sherry
Issue No. 2304

Staff shortages and job cuts are causing closures

Staff shortages and job cuts are causing closures

Stafford Hospital has extended the overnight closure of its A&E department because it says it doesn't have enough workers.

The department has closed between 10pm and 8am since December.

The Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust board said it would stop the overnight closure next month. Now the board has extended it until October.

A public inquiry into the hospital described its standard of care as “appalling” and said managers were distracted by targets and cost-cutting.

It said that up to 1,200 patients died unnecessarily at the hospital between 2005 and 2009 and that understaffing put patient safety at risk.

The Tories told Stafford Hospital to make £80 million in cuts last year. The trust announced plans to cut 40 percent of beds and slash hundreds of jobs.

Tory health secretary Andrew Lansley downplayed NHS cuts earlier this month.

Meanwhile bosses want to make workers at the Russells Hall hospital in Dudley pay 30 percent more for parking—and snatch the charges from wages.

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Tue 22 May 2012, 17:25 BST
Issue No. 2304
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