A&E diversions ‘unacceptable’

Two prospective parliamentary candidates have slammed figures that show Dewsbury and District Hospital has picked up the slack when ambulances have been diverted.

Last week we revealed the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust had diverted ambulances carrying emergency patients from Pinderfields in Wakefield to Dewsbury on 70 occasions in 2014.

Labour candidates Jo Cox (Batley and Spen) and Paula Sherriff (Dewsbury) said the figures were unacceptable.

Miss Sherriff said: “It is an affront to the people of North Kirklees and the hardworking frontline staff at Dewsbury that they are having to cope with the inadequacies of Pinderfields on such a regular basis.”

Mrs Cox said: “What impact are these diversions having on waiting times? Every time an ambulance that should be going to Pinderfields arrives at Dewsbury it means local people are having to suffer and wait longer.”

The pair have called on the Trust to rethink its decision to downgrade Dewsbury’s A&E.

The Trust said it had increased beds at Pinderfields to reduce diverts, and there were just five in December despite a 10 per cent increase in ambulance visits.