Drive to end 'unacceptable' 12 month NHS waiting list

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has said it is "unacceptable" that patients should have to wait more than a year for NHS treatment in England, unless it is clinically necessary.

He announced a £250 million drive to cut down waiting lists by performing more than 100,000 additional treatments in the NHS during the summer.

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193,000 patients have waited longer than 18 weeks

A key indicator of NHS performance is the target to reach 90% of patients within 18 weeks - but there is a backlog of 193,000 people who have waited longer.

A budget of £250m has been allocated to prioritise their care, but this could bring longer waits for others.

Health correspondent Catherine Jones reports.


Extra 40,000 'to be admitted to hospital'

An extra 40,000 will be admitted to hospital for vital treatment after the Heath Secretary announced extra funding to help cut NHS waiting lists.

According to Jeremy Hunt, the extra £250 million will pay for:

  • Reduce long waits will see 100,000 treatments to people who have been waiting more than 18 weeks.
  • A casework review of every patient waiting over or close to 52 weeks, to ensure that they are treated as a priority and are not made to wait for an operation unless there are strong clinical reasons.

Drive to end 'unacceptable' 12 month NHS waiting lists

No patient should have to wait for more than 12 months for medical treatment, unless it is clinically necessary, Jeremy Hunt has declared.

The NHS has kept average waiting times below 10 weeks and fewer people are waiting longer than 18 weeks, a government spokesman said.

The Health Secretary announced a £250 million cash injection to end the "unacceptable" year-long waiting period some patients had to endure.

The money will be used to fund 100,000 extra treatments for NHS patients over the summer.

Mr Hunt highlighted a dramatic cut in numbers of people waiting 12 months or more for treatment, which has fallen from 18,458 when the coalition Government came to power in 2010 to 574 now.

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