Sajid Javid finally unveils NHS backlog plan that pledges to eliminate one-year waits for ops and carry out 9m more checks and tests by 2025 after claims Treasury blocked £12bn a year deal to push for tougher targets
Ministers today promised to wipe out one-year waits for operations in England as the Government finally publishes its long-awaited blueprint to tackle record NHS backlogs caused by the pandemic.
Unveiling the multi-billion pound National Recovery Plan in Parliament, 보건장관 사지 드 자 비드 said that ’99 per cent’ of patients will wait less than a year for elective treatment by March 2024.
Latest figures show more than 300,000 people have been languishing in queues for routine operations for at least 12 months — nearly 200 times more than the 1,600 before Covid struck.
Mr Javid warned he expects waiting lists to get worse before they get better, with around 10million ‘missing’ procedures during the pandemic as people were told to stay away from hospitals to protect the NHS.
There are already 6million people — the equivalent of one in nine — waiting for elective procedures like hip and knee operations or cataracts surgery, compared to around 4.4m pre-pandemic.
Mr Javid said the assumption was that waiting lists will start to come down in March 2024.
He also announced the NHS will conduct an additional 9million extra checks, tests and procedures per year by 2025, with the Government making ‘greater use’ of private sector capacity like it did during Covid.
있습니다 69 community diagnostic centres up and running, 자비드 씨가 말했다, and the aim is to build a total of 100 within the next three years. The ‘one-stop shops’ offer MRI and CT scans as well as blood tests and other checks.
The recovery plan, which sets out how the NHS will spend £39bn over three years, was due to be published on Monday but it was delayed at the 11th hour after reports of a row over ‘tough targets’ demanded by the Chancellor.
Rishi Sunak — seen as a potential successor to the embattled Prime Minister — was said to have been frustrated that the recovery plan does not offer value for money.
It is being paid for by a controversial £12bn a year national insurance hike coming in from April which breaks the Conservative party’s 2019 manifesto pledge.
The NHS recovery plan was due to be published on Monday but it was pushed back at the 11th hour because of a row over ‘tough targets’ demanded by the Chancellor Rishi Sunak (왼쪽 사진, 오늘) and the Prime Minister (권리, also today)
Announcing the plan in the House of Commons today, 자비드 씨가 말했다: ‘Assuming half of the missing demand from the pandemic returns over the next three years, the NHS expect waiting lists to be reducing by March 2024.
‘Addressing long waits is critical to the recovery of elective care and we will be actively offering longer waiting patients greater choice about their care to help bring these numbers down.
‘The plan sets the ambition of eliminating waits of longer than a year, waits in elective care, by March 2025.
‘With this no-one will wait longer than two years by July this year and the NHS aims to eliminate the waits of over 18 months by April 2023 이상 65 weeks by March 2024.’
The Government first announced that NHS England will receive an extra £39bn over the next three years last September as part of a new ‘Health and Social Care Levy’. The NHS in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will receive proportionately similar amounts.
Today’s recovery plan was developed with Royal Colleges, patient groups and health charities, 자비드 씨가 말했다.
Running to more than 50 페이지, it details the NHS’ aim to ‘eliminate’ waits of over 18 months by April 2023, and waits over 65 weeks by March 2024.
It also involves adding new surgical hubs to the network of 122 already operating across the country, focusing on high-volume routine surgery so more patients can get seen more quickly.
NHS chief executive Amanda Pritchard said: ‘As we move out of the Omicron wave the NHS is applying the same determination and ‘can do’ spirit we have displayed throughout the pandemic, to address backlogs in routine care that have inevitably built up, and reduce long waits.
‘That cannot happen overnight but we are determined to make the best possible use of the additional investment and take the best from our pandemic response, including smarter use of digital care and flexible working between teams and trusts, while building this additional diagnostic capacity that will help to accelerate progress.
‘As we have always said throughout the pandemic, it is vitally important that anybody who has health needs continues to come forward, so that staff can help you with the best options for your care.’
총리, Boris Johnson described the three-year plan as the ‘biggest catch-up programme in the history of the health service’.
‘These measures will make sure patients receive the right care, in the right place at the right time as we bust the covid backlogs and recover from the pandemic,’ 그는 덧붙였다.
Latest figures show one in nine people in England were on the NHS waiting list for routine operations by the end of November.
이상 300,000 patients had waited over a year — often in pain — for ops such as hip and knee replacements or cataracts surgery. Of them, 18,500 had queued for at least two years — seven times more than last summer.
동시에, just two-thirds (67.5 퍼센트) of cancer patients were given their first treatment within two months of the disease first being detected — the lowest number ever. Only three-quarters of suspected cancer patients were referred to a specialist within the NHS two-week target, another low.
Separate data shows total of 12,986 지출 12 or more hours in emergency departments before being treated in December — the most since records began in 2010 and up by a fifth from November.
동시에, 다만 73 per cent of A&E patients were seen within the NHS’ four-hour target, the lowest percentage ever. Separate data shows heart attack patients waited 53 minutes on average for an ambulance to respond to their 999 요구.
The number of people in England who saw a specialist for suspected cancer in November 2021 following an urgent GP referral was higher than the pre-pandemic average as patients continued to come back to the health service after multiple lockdown cycles.
하나, the number who waited more than two weeks to see the specialist set a new record high for the third month running, soaring to more than 55,000 people in November.
주위에 28,000 waited more than a month to start treatment – the second highest ever after last September.
People who waited more than a month to start treatment after a decision to treat was also the second highest-ever on record in November. And a record 14,900 waited more than two months.
Other NHS figures show ambulances responded to 82,000 category-one calls in December which was higher than any other month on record and the equivalent of one every 33 초.
The average response time in December for ambulances dealing with the most urgent incidents – defined as calls from people with life-threatening illnesses or injuries – was nine minutes and 13 초.
This is just under the nine minutes and 20 seconds in October, which was the longest average response time since current records began in August 2017.
Ambulances also took an average of 53 분과 21 seconds to respond to emergency calls, such as heart attacks burns, epilepsy and strokes – the second longest time on record.
Response times for urgent calls – late stages of labour, non-severe burns and diabetes – averaged two hours, 51 minutes and eight seconds, again the second longest time on record.