10 May 2016 | Emergency departments around the country are under increasing strain, but up to 10 percent of ED visits may be unnecessary.

Minor ailments including colds, ulcers and even paper cuts are distracting doctors and nurses from those who really need emergency care.

Around one in four Kiwis will make a visit to ED this year -- more than 1 million patients -- and the numbers are rising.

Middlemore Hospital in south Auckland is home to the country's busiest ED. Numbers this year are already up 5 percent on last year. They see up to 350 patients a day and, with the winter peak on the way, they're concerned that number could go over 400.

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Less than a minute to read Nicholas Harvey

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