Press Release – Capital and Coast District Health Board
People may wait longer to be seen at Wellington Regional Hospital emergency department because of high patient numbers.
Chief medical officer John Tait says more people are using the ED, and the hospital is experiencing high occupancy.
Around 180 patients present to ED daily. Numbers reached 196 on Saturday and 182 on Sunday.
Meanwhile, hospital occupancy has been consistently above 93 percent for the past month
“High patient numbers mean people coming to ED with non-urgent illnesses or injuries are waiting longer than usual,” Mr Tait said.
ED prioritises people by the severity of their injury or illness – not the order of arrival – and staff are doing a great job to safely manage the large volume of patients.
“There’s no single reason why we’re busier, but we’ve noticed people coming to ED are sicker and need to be admitted.
“With winter approaching, people should remember to take care of themselves – getting the flu vaccination, and visiting their GP if they’re unwell. This may prevent the need to come to hospital for treatment later.”
Anyone unsure about whether they need ED care should contact their GP or call Healthline (0800 611 116) for free advice from a registered nurse.