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Systematic care failures in assessing children

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A 'systematic failure in the NHS' to assess children with acute illness that could be better managed by general practice, out of hours services and NHS Direct, has led to yearly increases in emergency hospital admissions for children.

The emergency admissions rate among children rose by 28 per cent from 63 per 1000 of the population in 1999 to 81 per 1000 of the population in 2010, a report in Archives of Disease in Childhood revealed

Analysis of the types of condition prompting admission, showed that many of these were common infections that could have been managed by GPs and nurses in the community and probably did not need hospital treatment, the authors concluded.

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