Another target that was missed is for patients who have been diagnosed with cancer beginning their treatment within 62 days. Approximately 1 in 5 patients waited longer for the required treatment, despite 6 of the other 7 targets on cancer being met.
Critics of the way the NHS is currently being managed have also pointed out that on one Thursday, 5000 beds were occupied by those ready to be discharged. Some are explaining this as ‘bed-blocking’, a response to cuts in social and community care, whilst others are simply noting that, the figures are amongst the worst since the NHS began keeping these records in 2010.
In combination with the threatened strike action of junior doctors in a row over contractual changes and expected pay cuts, some are calling the current situation a ‘crisis’ and a ‘perfect storm’ in the lead up to Christmas.
It might be the unpredictable nature of the issues the NHS is facing now which are the scariest, for both staff and patients alike. With the need for a safe NHS that is able to consistently deliver high quality care to its patients, the reasons behind why targets are missed need to be addressed. While parties argue about whom or what is to blame, the danger is that the patient and their needs will be overlooked; that is the type of situation we see repeatedly here at Fletchers.
Fletchers Solicitors is a law firm specialising in medical negligence, serious injury and motorbike cases. For more information please call 03300 080322.