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Some A&Es 'see same patient over 50 times'

Some NHS A&E units in England are seeing the same patients more than 50 times in a year.

A Freedom of Information request submitted by the BBC revealed that 12,000 people across the nation went to accident and emergency wards more than ten times in the year.

However, some of these patients caused more disruption than others, with one person in Luton visiting their local hospital's A&E on more than 230 occasions, while this feat almost mirrored by a member of the public in Sheffield, who used the accident room 223 times.

Patients Association chief executive Katherine Murphy told the BBC: "These figures are of great concern and provide yet more proof that our already overstretched A&E services are being put under increasingly severe strain."

However, a spokesperson for the NHS downplayed the statistics and claimed that, when compared to the "big picture", this was not an urgent problem.

By Chris Stevenson