The number of people who went to the Orange hospital Emergency Department in a critical condition over this holiday period has spiked.
Orange Health Service general manager Catherine Nowlan said the number of people going to the hospital and arriving by ambulance was up overall in December.
However, she said the most noticeable increase was for people with an imminently life-threatening condition.
That includes people suffering from a critical illness or in very severe pain, with serious chest pains, difficulty in breathing or with severe fractures.
Ms Nowlan said it was not clear why there had been an increase. However, she said Orange hospital was the trauma centre for the region to which people in a critical condition would go.
“The end of year holiday period is traditionally a busy time for all NSW hospitals. Activity in the Orange hospital Emergency Department during this time reflected this activity,” she said.
“There were an additional 123 presentations in December, 2018 compared to the previous year, including an increase in 36 cases that were brought in by ambulance.”
She said 2795 people went to the Emergency Department in December. Last year 7568 people went to the emergency department in the three months from October-December.
Ms Nowlan said the hospital and staff had responded well to the extra workload.
“Despite the increase in numbers, the percentage of all patients seen, treated and through our ED within four hours of arrival improved on figures for the same period last year,” she said.
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