Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital A&E remains on black alert after “high level of demand” forces ambulances with patients to queue up to three hours

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, which is on Black

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, which is on Black Watch. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (N&N) remains on black alert today because of pressure on its services.

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Picture: DENISE B

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

Up to 14 ambulances were forced to queue outside accident and emergency for three hours last night as the second-highest level of alert was declared at about 4.30pm.

A spokesman confirmed the hospital remained on black alert at 4.15pm today.

This was despite the postponement of the junior doctors' strike, which was called off yesterday evening.

The planned strike forced the N&N to cancel 11 non-emergency operations and nearly 400 patient appointments.

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, which is on Black

Ambulances stacking up outside A&E at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, which is on Black Watch. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015


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Norwich South Labour MP Clive Lewis said the disruption at the hospital's A&E was a product of cuts to the NHS.

He said government cash needs to come sooner for the service.

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A spokesman for the N&N said last night: 'We are experiencing a high level of demand for our services and we are working with the ambulance trust, CCGs and neighbouring hospitals to keep our patients safe. We changed to black alert after seeing high numbers of patients.'

Black alert means hospital services takes steps to free up capacity due to the high level of patient demand.

Ambulances stacking up outside the A&E department at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Pi

Ambulances stacking up outside the A&E department at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

A&E departments often experience greater pressure through the winter months.

Last December, five hospitals in the East declared a black alert on the same day.

Mr Lewis, said staff at the hospital work hard to look after patients and pointed the finger at the government for the situation.

'This [situation] is the reality after five years of cuts,' he said.

Have you been caught up in the black alert? Email nicholas.carding@archant.co.uk

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