PERFORMANCE: Mintues of a meeting held by NHS Bromley’s clinical commissioning committee said attendances had risen 25 per cent from the end of April to June “which was not abating”.

The minutes said: “These included quite sick patients and admissions were increasing. This was an unexpected trend at this point in the year when attendances would normally be at their lowest level. It could not be attributed to any epidemic, and admission avoidance schemes were also in place. “The causes were being investigated. There might have been some changes in admission criteria.

“Terry Rich [London Borough of Bromley’s director of adult services] said that LBB and the PCT were looking to achieve some savings from admission avoidance, and was concerned that the hospital might be relaxing admission criteria to fill available beds.”

The hospital is run by South London Healthcare Trust.