PATIENTS visiting Basingstoke hospital’s emergency department are waiting longer to be seen than the average in England, figures show.

A combination of winter and the ongoing Covid pandemic has placed a huge strain on hospitals across the country, and Basingstoke hospital is no exception.

Data for Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (HHFT), which runs Basingstoke, Andover and Winchester hospitals, shows patients are facing long waits for emergency treatment and wards are short of beds.

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The figures for HHFT were worse than two years ago, despite the number of patients visiting A&E being lower.

The figures, provided by the BBC, show that for HHFT, 32 per cent of the 10,512 people who visited A&E in December had to wait longer than four hours.

This was higher than the average for England which was 27 per cent.

It was also higher than the performance of HHFT two years ago, when 24 per cent of patients were not seen within four hours, despite more people (11,155) visiting A&E at that time.

Figures show that 11 per cent of the 727 patients taken to A&E by ambulance between January 17 and 23 had to wait longer than 30 minutes to be handed over to staff.

This was lower than the average in England of 18 per cent.

However, it was higher than the trust’s performance two years ago, when 10 per cent of the 756 patients taken to A&E by ambulance had to wait more than 30 minutes.

Almost a quarter of patients were not given a bed within four hours of being admitted as an emergency to Basingstoke hospital in December.

Of the 3,417 patients admitted to the Aldermaston Road hospital as an emergency, 24 per cent were still without a bed on a ward four hours later.

This was lower than the average for England of 32 per cent.

It was also lower than two years ago, when 37 per cent of the 3,313 emergency admissions were not given a bed within four hours.

HHFT has been asked for a comment.

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Kimberley Barber