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HUNDREDS of people who suffer [...].

HUNDREDS of people who suffer serious injuries are dying due to poor care.

A report found the death rate in England for major trauma patients is 20% higher than in the United States.

The National Audit Office concluded that services had barely improved over the past two decades, despite there being repeated calls for reform.

The government said changes are now under way that will transform the emergency service. The NAO said as far back as 1988 studies identified deficiencies in care. But its report concluded there is little sign of progress, citing recent evidence that a majority of cases are not handled well. There are 20,000 major trauma cases in England every year, and the analysis found that between 450 and 600 lives could be saved each year in England if care was managed more effectively. Too often patients with severe injuries are taken by ambulance to the nearest casualty department, rather than the hospital with the equipment and expertise to cope with these complex cases, the report found. Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office, said: Current services for people who suffer major trauma are not good enough.

The Department of Health and the NHS must get a grip on co-ordinating services through trauma networks.
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Feb 8, 2010
Words:209
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