The number of patients waiting longer than six months for surgical treatment in England has almost tripled in the past four years, according to the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS)
The RCS has today released a new analysis of waiting times data showing that, in March 2017, the number of patients waiting more than 26 weeks for treatment was 126,188, while in March 2013 (the year when six-month waiters were at their lowest level), 45,054 patients were waiting more than six months.
The data analysed shows that patients awaiting some types of surgery were experiencing particularly strong rises in waits for six or more months between March 2013 and March 2017. These included:
- ear, nose and throat – a 256% rise
- urology – 199% rise
- general surgery – 146% rise
- oral surgery – 146% rise
- brain and spinal surgery – 145% rise
In addition, the analysis showed that the number of patients waiting more than nine months (39 weeks) for treatment rose by 209% during the same period. This was a rise from 6,415 patients in March 2013 to 19,838 patients in March 2017.
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Full detail: Consultant-led Referral to Treatment Waiting Times