NHS delivers for patients but parts of service under 'almost impossible pressure'

Matthew Taylor comments on the latest performance figures for the NHS in England.

9 September 2021

Responding to the latest performance figures for the NHS in England, Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:

“The NHS has worked relentlessly to make inroads into the care backlog in recent months, with 2.6 million patients starting consultant-led treatment in June and July, half a million people being checked for cancer, and 3.9 million diagnostic tests being carried out. These performance figures show that, with investment, the NHS has delivered for its patients.

“However, it’s clear that there are certain parts of the health service that are under almost impossible pressure. For example, ambulance services have reported one of the toughest periods ever, with record numbers of 999 calls this summer. Also, the elective waiting list has now reached 5.6 million, and is expected to increase further.

“The government’s recent funding announcement has provided welcome clarity, but it also left a major shortfall, as an extremely tough winter looms. If the pressures of the pandemic continue, we need to make sure the NHS receives proper investment long-term, alongside social care, so that it can continue to do everything in its power to look after the population.”