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Urgent action required to tackle local A&E crisis, says Joan Ryan

Joan Ryan, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Enfield North, has demanded action to tackle an emerging local accident & emergency crisis after figures showed plummeting performance at nearby A&E departments following the closure of Chase Farm hospital’s A&E.

Joan Ryan said she believes extra resources are urgently needed at North Middlesex and Barnet hospitals after NHS England data showed the performance of their A&E departments – which have largely taken over from Chase Farm since it closed - has worsened significantly in the last year.

The number of emergency patients waiting more than four hours to be admitted at North Middlesex in the week to the end of March MORE THAN QUADRUPLED versus the same week last year, to 126 from 31 a year ago.

That makes North Middlesex the fifth worst-performing of the 36 trusts and other A&E outlets in London during the week, up from ninth-worst last year.

Figures for the Royal Free trust in Hampstead, which now runs Chase Farm and Barnet hospitals, showed the number of emergency patients waiting more than four hours to be admitted ALMOST DOUBLED to 121 in the week to the end of March, against 62 in the same period a year ago.

The data is part of national figures showing the NHS in England missed its four-hour A&E waiting target in the past three months as performance dropped to its LOWEST LEVEL IN A DECADE.

Just 91.8% of patients were seen in four hours between January and March - below the 95% target and representing the worst three-month performance since the target was introduced at the end of 2004.

Joan Ryan believes the worsening performance is a direct result of the Tories’ misguided, cynical and damaging decision to close Chase Farm’s A&E department – after they promised to save it.

Joan Ryan, Labour candidate for Enfield North, said:

The NHS is going backwards under the Tories.

Local Accident and Emergency departments have been placed under great pressure, both by the Tories’ decision to axe the A&E unit at Chase and the fact that under the Tory-led Government it is getting harder for people to see their GP - one in four people can't get a GP appointment within a week.

Our National Health Service can’t survive another five years of the Tories in charge.

The NHS is Labour’s greatest achievement. We created it, we saved it, and it will only be safe in the hands of a future Labour Government.

Therefore, I support Labour’s plans to strengthen the NHS for the future and ensure it has time to care with 20,000 more nurses and 8,000 more GPs by 2020, and a guarantee for patients of a GP appointment within 48 hours.”

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