Socialist Worker

Nearly 100,000 patients made to wait for accident and emergency departments

by Tomáš Tengely-Evans
Issue No. 2687

Patients have had to wait in ambulances

Patients have had to wait in ambulances (Pic: mangopulp2008/Flickr)


A record-breaking number of patients have been forced to wait for more than an hour before being admitted from ambulances into accident and emergency (A&E) departments.

More than 80,000 patients in England had to wait with ambulance workers for at least half an hour during the last five weeks.

And nearly 22,000 of those patients had to wait at least an hour.

These figures are the highest since records began in 2017-18, showing the scale of the crisis in the health service.

The hospital with the worst figures was University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust with over 2,500 patients forced to wait for at least half an hour. Barking, Havering and Redbridge NHS Trust in east London had a similar figure.

These figures reflect increased admissions to A&E during winter months, partly due to patients with flu.

But hospitals would be better able to cope if the health service wasn’t suffering after the previous decade of Tory cuts and privatisation.

In England there is a shortage of 43,000 nurses alone.


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