Responding to the latest urgent and emergency care sitrep, and the latest test and trace figures, Dr Layla McCay, director of policy at the NHS Confederation, said: “The latest urgent and emergency care figures suggest the pressure on the NHS is easing a little, offering the much-needed beginnings of space for staff and service recovery as the health service looks beyond the pandemic. However, we must not pretend the crisis is over.
"While the latest test and trace figures show another decline in infections, this has slowed in recent weeks. The occupancy of adult critical care beds has reduced, but the number of patients arriving at hospital by ambulance is still comparable to highs seen during last autumn and winter, which demonstrates the ongoing pressures on ambulance services. Our members are also concerned about the risk of a surge in demand for ambulance services as society opens back up and restrictions are scaled back, and the impact of slowing vaccination supply.
“We must all continue to be patient and remain cautious – no one is protected until everyone is protected. It is vital that we all continue to play our part, maintaining social distancing and abiding by restrictions, to keep these figures moving in the right direction.”