Record number of patients are facing longer waits than ever in A&E's as documents leaked recently show the full extent of the winter crisis in the NHS in England. Nearly 25% of patients arriving at A&E had to wait longer than 4 hours. To add on to this, a number of people faced long waits for a bed when A&E staff admitted them into hospital, with more than 18,000 trolley waits of four hours or more. Some 485 of them were longer than 12 hours. These figures are alarming to us, so what exactly can be done to tackle this issue?
Well, the department of education recently have proposed a 25% increase in junior medical student to help more homegrown doctors work in the department. However, the NHS is short on money, so the wages issue must be tackled also. Furthermore, the NHS have offered paramedics a £10,000 bonus to tackle the 999 crisis, keeping ambulances arriving on time to the patients in need of assistance.
Much criticism has been targeted at the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, whose tax budget has helped build up Brexit reserves, and not tackle the NHS crisis. With many doctors urgently calling for additional funding to aid them, the government is struggling to cope with the demands. With junior doctor salaries at their lowest ever, students are drifting away from choosing medicine.
There has also been many people campaigning about the treatment of nurses and staff within hospitals, with the average hours worked in a day increased in the last 4 years. People believed the overworked nurses are more likely to perform mistakes and are not being paid enough for what they do. The hospitals and surgeries are having problems with staffing, with increased pressure and demand on services from an ageing population.
The NHS in West Yorkshire is proposing to reduce its projected £800m deficit by cutting enough hospital beds to fill five wards. Eight billion pounds was pledged in the Conservative 2015 election manifesto and in 2014, George Osborne agreed a further £2bn for frontline services, however campaigners say this is not enough to keep the NHS afloat.
To conclude, the huge financial pressure and problems faced with overspending have left the NHS in no good state, and with the government struggling to cope with the financial issues, doctors may start to stop doing what they do best: save lives.