Intended for healthcare professionals


NHS waiting times: number of patients waiting 18 weeks for treatment rises sharply

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: (Published 11 May 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k2114
  1. Gareth Iacobucci
  1. The BMJ

The number of people waiting more than 18 weeks for NHS treatment has increased by 35% in the past year, official figures show.1

Performance data from NHS England also showed that 25 475 operations were cancelled at the last minute in January-March 2018. The Royal College of Surgeons noted that this was the highest number since quarterly records began in 1994.

The college said that “extreme pressures” in emergency departments had affected waiting times for planned surgery. In January, NHS England advised hospitals to defer non-urgent surgery until the end …

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