Responding to the latest NHS performance statistics, Nick Ville, director of membership and policy at the NHS Confederation, said: “These figures show the health service is still struggling to climb out of the morass created by a decade of austerity. Year on year, the demands made on frontline services continue to grow, with attendances at A&E significantly higher than at this time last year. Our dedicated staff do all they can for patients, but they are being stretched to breaking point.
“This week’s announcement of additional investment in the NHS is welcome, as the money is desperately needed to modernise services and to improve the quality and efficiency of patient care. But the government must complete the ‘unfinished business’ of the funding settlement for the health and care system. We need more investment in education and training if we are to have a chance of filling the 100,000 vacancies in the NHS. The drastic cuts to social care and public health services also need to be reversed so that we can keep more people well and living independently in the community.”