08:50 15 February 2013
Based on the review conducted by The King’s Fund, the waiting times in accident and emergency departments are at their worst level since the four-hour target was introduced in 2003 to 2004.
The report confirms that about 232,000 patients had to wait for more than four hours to get medical assistance. Although this is still within the government’s target, the numbers obtained from October to December last year shows that the situation has steadily worsened.
The report also revealed the following facts:
• Health service in England needs to save £20billion in the next four months in order to keep pace with the increasing demand within flat budgets.
• The quality of patient care worsened compared to last year.
• One fourth of all the hospital trusts now report breaches in the A&E target. A sign that the problem is not getting better.
The report stated that figures from last year showed an increase , as quoted by The Telegraph: "The proportion of patients waiting more than four hours from arrival in A&E to admission, transfer or discharge in the third quarter of 2012/13 (October to December) rose by 21per cent over the previous year and 38per cent on the previous quarter.”
However, the report mentioned some positive news. It confirms that waiting times for non-emergency hospital operations were holding steady and that infection rates were falling.
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