We are experiencing a sustained increase in demand for all NHS services. Our NHS and care services are under extreme pressure and across Greater Manchester, we are continuing to see exceptionally high numbers of people attend emergency departments (A&E).
Our hospitals are almost full, with limited beds available and there are extremely long waits to be seen in emergency departments and for ambulances. This is not a situation we want for any of our patients and our dedicated staff are working extremely hard to make sure patients are seen in order of clinical need.
Our priority, as always, is to provide safe and high-quality care for people in Greater Manchester. Hospitals, and our community services, including staff across nursing, primary care and allied health professionals are doing all they can to meet people’s needs.
It is possible that in coming days, we may need to make some further changes to protect our emergency and life-saving services to ensure we maintain safe care 24/7. This could mean that we have to make some difficult clinical decisions on how we prioritise people coming forward for care; seeing the very sick and seriously injured first, supporting people where appropriate to seek alternative care and further encouraging people to make use of NHS 111 online and phone services (111 online is for people aged 5 and over). If people need medical help or advice, they should go to NHS 111 online unless it is a life-threatening emergency when they should still call 999.
To help make more space in our hospitals, we are trying to get people home or to an alternative care setting faster. We ask the public to help by collecting friends or relatives as soon as the NHS asks you to do so.
Regardless of how busy our hospitals and other services are, and any strike action taking place, it is really important that patients who need urgent medical care continue to come forward, especially in emergency and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk. If it is not urgent, there are a number of alternatives available for the public. If we have not contacted you, please attend your appointments, including at your GP, as planned. The NHS will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled.