Essex hospital declares major incident caused by “unprecedented demand” on emergency service

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 17 November 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g6891
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. 1The BMJ

A major incident was declared at Colchester General Hospital on 13 November after “unprecedented demand” from emergency department admissions and concerns about the way some patients were being treated.

The emergency assessment unit at the hospital in northeast Essex has been closed to new patients and an emergency control centre set up to deal with problems concerning capacity. Patients have been urged to use the hospital’s emergency department only if they have a serious or life threatening condition.

Concerns at the hospital led inspectors from the Care and Quality Commission (CQC) to make an unannounced inspection of its emergency department and assessment unit on 12 November. The report of the inspection has not yet been published, …

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