Addressing inequalities will be our only hope of sustainable health and care services

Director of the Welsh NHS Confederation responds to the latest NHS performance data for Wales.

18 April 2024

  • In March, just under 94,900 calls were made to the 111 helpline service, an increase of around 17,100 calls compared to the previous month. Of these, just over 75,600 calls (79.7%) were answered, the second highest figure on record.  
  • In March, an average 159 immediately life-threatening calls were made to the ambulance service each day, the same as in February, and the joint fourth highest on record. 
  • In February, the number of patient pathways waiting to start treatment increased from just over 754,800 to just over 763,100, the second highest figure on record. 
  • In February, patient pathways waiting for diagnostic services decreased to just under 111,500. The number waiting longer than eight weeks decreased to just over 42,000. This was the lowest since March 2022. 

Responding to the latest NHS performance and activity data for Wales, director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Darren Hughes said: 

“The latest NHS performance figures again highlight the increasing demand on our health and care services. There was an average of 2,962 people attending emergency departments every day, an increase compared to the previous month, and more people calling 111 helpline service. 

“With the recent industrial action, it is no surprise that there has been an increase in the number of people waiting for treatment and that is why we welcomed the suspension of the planned strike action by consultants and SAS doctors. 

“Our health and care services are in a challenging position, but investing in social care, workforce, capital and digital are the NHS’s only chance to free up patient flow in hospitals and improve outcomes for patients.  

“Looking to the future, addressing inequalities and the wider determinants of health will be our only hope of sustainable health and care services and supporting a healthier population.