It is worrying to see the NHS missing targets when the busiest times are yet ahead. Sudden cold weather often brings a greater demand on the cash strapped trusts. Admissions for serious illness and unexpected injuries increases towards the midwinter.
If targets are not being met, this can only mean patients failing to get the right treatment quickly or being dismissed or misdiagnosed altogether. This only has a knock on effect for complaints and claims in the future.
Lets hope the NHS is getting itself ready for the busy season ahead.
The NHS in England missed several key targets for A&E admissions, cancer referrals, ambulance response times and NHS 111 calls in September as it braces itself for a busy winter period. Against a target of 95%, 93.4% of patients attending emergency departments were seen within four hours in September. The figure was 94.3% the previous month. The A&E data for September is often cited as an indicator of pressure on the NHS as it prepares for winter. Dr Mark Holland, president of the Society for Acute Medicine, has warned that A&E units are facing a a nightmarish scenario that will heap on the pressure in the buildup to winter.