NHS backlog for routine treatment hits 6MILLION: Crisis continues to bite even before Omicron takes hold as A&E performance plunges to worst EVER level with 10,000 patients left waiting 12 HOURS to be treated


As hospital chiefs fear’sustained stress’ over urgent care, officials revealed that almost six million NHS patients are currently waiting for routine treatment.

NHS England released data for October showing that 5.98million were still waiting to have routine surgery such as knee and hip replacements. This includes more than 300,000.

In order to provide for those infected with the virus, hospitals had to cancel thousands upon thousands of procedures. This left thousands of people whose lives were not affected by the outbreak on the brink of collapse. 

According to NHS England, the mammoth wait list is now at six million. This compares with 4.4million per year prior to Covid’s arrival in the UK. 

According to the health system’s rules, patients shouldn’t wait more than 18 weeks after GP referral for treatment. A third of these patients don’t get seen within the timeframe.

More than 2million had been waiting for more than four months — the second-highest figure ever recorded.

And 312,665 — one in 20 patients — were forced to wait for more than a year for treatment.

Meanwhile, A&E attendance data for November shows the number of patients spending more than 12 hours to be seen reached 10,646 — a 51 per cent hike on the figure last month, which was already at a record level.

120,749 individuals had to wait for care more than 4 hours. This is second highest ever recorded, and slightly lower than the previous month.

Around 2million people in England sought emergency care last month, six per cent less than October, while there were 506,238 emergency admissions, down two per cent on last month.

Stephen Powis is the NHS’ national medical director. He stated that the figures demonstrate how staff in the NHS are continuing to deal with the Covid backlog, despite the sustained pressures on emergency and urgent care.

“We are heading into very difficult winter and we are working together with our partners in social services to get as many of the patients who can do so home for Christmas which is right both for them, their families, as well as to free up beds.

Omicron is a mysterious virus that has been circulating in the United States since 1918. Experts advise us to continue our efforts against it by developing vaccines.

“Thanks to staff and volunteers, the NHS Covid vaccine programme has provided more than 100,000,000 jabs. Please come forward when you are ready.”