Hospitals

House of Lords written question – answered on 14th January 2015.

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Photo of Lord Mawhinney Lord Mawhinney Conservative

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will list the National Health Service hospitals which declared major incidents in the period 1 December 2014 to 7 January 2015 inclusive; and in each case how long the incidents lasted.

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, for each National Health Service hospital which declared a major incident in the period 1 December 2014 to 7 January 2015 inclusive, how much money was spent per year in the preceding two years on the fees and costs of agencies which were contracted to supply (1) doctors, (2) nurses, and (3) other National Health Service staff, to the hospital concerned.

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, for each National Health Service hospital which declared a major incident in the period 1 December 2014 to 7 January 2015 inclusive, how many beds were occupied by patients whose treatment had been completed but who remained in hospital because alternative health care or treatment were not available for them outside hospital at the time that the major incident was brought into effect.

Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

NHS England, Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority have advised that this information is not held centrally.

In the context of hospitals currently declaring major incidents, this refers to an emergency situation where particular facilities or resources are under pressure and special arrangements are required to maintain the delivery of some services. It would be for the organisation that had declared the emergency to de-escalate it, in line with its incident response plan.

The use of major incidents has been part of the National Health Service planning process since 2005, and they have been declared in every year since then.

There is no central definition but a major incident in a hospital might be called in:

- times of severe pressure such as winter periods or an infectious disease outbreak; and- a period of particular local pressure such as dealing with a road traffic accident.

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