As highlighted in a recent BBC report, the NHS is failing to meet their targets for cancer patients to commence treatment, following referral by a GP.
The target is for patients to receive treatment within 62 days. The NHS aims to meet this target 85% of the time, but this target was last hit in December 2015.
Indeed, the BBC report noted that only 78% of patients were been seen within 62 days in the latest figures from July 2018. These figures are the lowest since records began in October 2009. To put this into context, in the past year, 28,000 patients have waited longer than two months for treatment and approximately 11,000 have waited for over three months for their cancer treatment to commence.
In addition, the planned operations target is regularly being missed. In England, patients waiting more than 18 weeks for non-urgent operations is the highest level it has been in a over decade. This means that nearly 504,000 patients were waiting more than 18 weeks for non urgent operations.
Dr Fran Woodard, of Macmillan Cancer Support, said the figures were “disappointing” and were “indicative of the immense pressure on the NHS”.
One of the complicating factors is an increase in referrals being made by GPs. NHS England reported that has been a 5% increase over the last few years. The demand on the NHS is reflected in the total waiting list for routine surgery currently being 4.12 million. This is the highest since August 2007.
Moosa-Duke Solicitors are specialists in clinical negligence law. If you believe that you or a family member have been a victim of negligence, due to private or NHS treatment, please do not hesitate to contact us on 0116 254 7456 to discuss your concerns.