Emergency departments across south London faced a record-high number of visitors on yesterday, including Croydon University Hospital.

The hospital had 622 patients seeking urgent care on June 12 amid the ongoing heatwave.

This is 16 per cent above the previous busiest summer day on record on June 17, 2021.

More than 1,250 people attended St George’s, Epsom and St Helier’s three emergency departments yesterday, which is a significant increase from the previous record of 1,170 set earlier this year.

There is a daily attendance average of 800 visitors to the trio of hospitals.

Kingston Hospital also experienced high demand, breaking previous attendance records with 530 people visit its emergency department, including 78 ambulances and 455 walk-ins.

Dr Richard Jennings, Group Chief Medical Officer at St George’s, Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals and Health Group, said: “We have never been busier, and with the upcoming strikes it’s going to be a very challenging week.

“We’re here, as always, for those who need us. But now more than ever, we need the public’s support in those cases where it is not an emergency.

“NHS 111 online should be your first port of call in these instances, as it can direct you to where you need to go.

“This weather has undoubtedly contributed to the rise in people – some who are vulnerable and very sick – coming to our emergency departments.

“Help us to prioritise care for those need it the most, and use our services wisely.”

Such a sudden rise in attendance has raised fears of a "double whammy" of pressures with the upcoming strike of hundreds of junior doctors.

Members of the British Medical Association and Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association who are concerned about the new government reforms to working conditions, among other issues, are set to strike from 7am today (June 13) until 7am on June 17.

This critical situation will impact patient services in the hospitals, and some appointments, procedures, and operations may be postponed to prioritize emergency care.

The NHS has urged patients to attend their appointments unless they hear otherwise.

The temperature outside is expected to rise in the high 20s, causing more people to suffer from heat exhaustion, dehydration, and sunburn.

The UK Health Security Agency and the Met Office have extended their heat-health alerts to the end of today.

Individuals should care for those unable to keep cool, stay hydrated, keep windows shut when indoors, and stay out of direct sunlight during peak hours.

Health officials are also concerned about the impact on respiratory and pollen-related illnesses.

The high pollen count in the UK has led to a surge in hospital visits due to shortness of breath.

NHS England has warned those experiencing respiratory distress linked to allergies to seek medical help if necessary.

Those with underlying respiratory conditions are especially susceptible to the shortness of breath caused by the high pollen count.

According to the NHS, those with serious breathing problems should contact their GP or asthma nurse for assistance, and in cases of emergency, call 999 or go to an emergency department for treatment.