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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 July 2007, 12:15 GMT 13:15 UK
Webcam broadcasts A&E wait times
Hospital webcam
Managers hope the camera will help staff and patients
Patients heading for a Lincolnshire hospital will have a better idea of waiting times thanks to a new webcam.

Lincoln County Hospital's A&E has installed the camera so people with minor injuries can check from home how long they may wait for treatment.

The picture, updated every two minutes, shows the waiting area along with a caption estimating waiting time.

Managers said the images were deliberately blurred to protection patient confidentiality.

Police presence

Head nurse Michelle Crouch said: "This will make life a lot easier for patients, many of who ring us to check waiting times.

"This is a convenient way for people to quickly check how busy we are and it also saves the hospital staff time answering those calls.

"We hope to expand the webpages and bring additional information to patients but that depends on patient needs and what they tell us they want."

A & E consultant Jai Pillay added: "This will help us manage the A & E better and hopefully spread demand on recourses which will improve the service for all."

At the same time Lincolnshire police confirmed they would be setting up a dedicated office in the hospital for a trial period.

The office, opposite the children's ward, would be staffed every Wednesday.

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