Quem espera, desespera
More patients are waiting longer for treatment than the 18 weeks specified by the NHS constitution than when the coalition took power, latest official figures show.
A total of 26,417 people in England waited more than 18 weeks to be treated in February this year compared to 20,662 in May 2010, when the government was formed – a 27% rise.
That was slightly more than January, when 25,823 waited beyond the time they should have to. And 35 of England's 151 NHS primary care trusts failed to treat the required 90% of patients within 18 weeks during February, up from 32 the month before.
The latest NHS referral to treatment (RTT) figures also show the average or median waiting time for patients who completed their RTT course of treatment in February was 8.7 weeks, compared to 8.4 weeks in May 2010.
Labour claimed the data was "a huge embarrassment for a prime minister who promised to keep NHS waiting times low. On his own test he is failing patients and the public", said the shadow health secretary, Andy Burnham. The coalition's plan to let hospitals get up to 49% of their income from private patients would leave NHS patients waiting even longer in future, he warned.
In June 2011, David Cameron made a pledge that "we will not lose control of waiting times – we will ensure they are kept low". It was one of five personal guarantees he made to voters on the NHS, and he has recently insisted that waiting times are down.
The RTT statistics showed that, across England as a whole, 91.2% of admitted patients and 97.1% of non-admitted patients were treated within 18 weeks, which is a legal right for all patients.
Simon Burns, the NHS minister at the Department of Health, highlighted the fact that the number of patients waiting over 18 weeks for their treatment has been cut by over 100,000 patients over the last year. That was "a great step in the right direction" and proof that "our health service is going from strength to strength".
Portugal, últimos dados divulgados na AR:
O número de cidadãos a aguardar por uma cirurgia nos hospitais públicos aumentou no ano passado em mais de 16 mil pessoas. Em Dezembro de 2011 estavam à espera de ser operadas no Serviço Nacional de Saúde (SNS) mais de 175 mil pessoas, o que coloca as listas de espera ao mesmo nível de 2008
A mediana (casos mais frequentes) de tempo de espera também aumentou ligeiramente no último ano – era de 3,1 meses em Dezembro de 2010 e passou para 3,2 meses em Dezembro de 2011. link
Etiquetas: listas de espera