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NHS winter pressures are becoming an all year reality, warn experts

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i4907 (Published 09 September 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i4907
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. London

The type of intense extra workload pressure often experienced by the NHS in winter has become a year long experience, say experts responding to the publication of the latest official data on the performance of the NHS in England.

NHS England’s combined performance summary data show an NHS that is missing many of its targets and hitting new record lows for performance in some areas.1

The data for July 2016 show that 90.3% of patients were seen within four hours in hospital emergency departments, down from 95% in the same month last year, and that 37 500 waited more than four hours for admission after the decision to admit, double the 17 300 in the same month last year.

Waiting times for elective treatment were also up, with 91.3% of patients starting consultant led treatment within 18 weeks, the worst performance since …

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