Our emergency departments are not coping with the huge numbers of patients seeking attention. People in desperate need often take eight hours to be seen by medical staff. There are even cases of people having to queue up outside emergency departments after having been brought there by ambulances. These are obviously patients, suspected heart attacks, stroke victims and asthmatics who require urgent attention.
We have been told that on Friday and Saturday nights the emergency facilities are over stretched because those are the nights that drunks and drug addicts clog the system. Mayhem is the result as those people attack staff and threaten waiting patients.
Doctors and nurses find themselves dealing with ranting, vomiting and convulsing outpatients who are a danger to themselves and to anyone around them.
The sad thing about it all is that the same alcoholics and druggies will be back the following weekend since drug and alcohol abuse are here to stay.
Since they are entitled to medical assistance I would like to propose that such people should be taken to a separate clinic in the hospital in which staff have been trained to handle dangerous and aggressive patients.
This would remove bottlenecks (pardon the pun) in the ordinary emergency departments. It would keep staff and patients safer so that they can do the job of attending to emergencies without the problem of raging and uncontrollable abusers.