Shortage of consultants puts A&E in crisis

MPs have stated that high-quality care is being compromised as over 80 per cent of emergency and accident cases don't have adequate consultants to attend to them for about 16 hours a day.

According to the Commons health select committee, there is a recruitment crisis being faced by medics at the emergency departments in hospitals as the doctors are less and workload is more and this is putting off young doctors.

The MPs report states, "Staffing levels in emergency departments are an area of considerable concern to the committee. They are not sufficient to meet demand, with only 17% of emergency departments managing to provide
16-hour consultant coverage during the working week."

It also adds that weekends spell things even worse and the levels of staffing are nowhere near meeting recommended best practice.

Lack of consultants and an ageing population have together spelt doom for the health system. Junior doctors are being asked to assess and reassess patients whereas according to the NHS England, the decision to treat, transfer and discharge patients should be with a senior doctor.