NHS missing key targets, according to latest figures

This is the 12th time in 13 months performance has dropped below the 95 per cent.

Performance was also below set target levels on access to cancer treatment, diagnostic tests and ambulance response times. At the end of September, 1.9 per cent of patients had been waiting over six weeks for diagnostic tests - nearly twice the proportion that should be suffering such delays.

Additionally, hospitals have been struggling to get patients out when they are ready to leave.

The monthly data also showed that ambulances missed their target to answer 75 per cent of the most serious 999 calls in eight minutes - the fourth month in a row it has not been achieved. On top of this, the NHS 111 phone service missed its target to answer 95 per cent of calls within 60 seconds, and the 62-day target for cancer treatment to start was missed with nearly one in five patients waiting longer.

However, six of the eight cancer targets were achieved, while the 18-week target for patients to be seen for non-emergency operations such as knee and hip replacements was met.
Shadow Health Secretary Heidi Alexander commented that the data highlights the possibility for the ‘most difficult winter for 30 years’.

She said: "There is now clear evidence that the cuts to social care are not only devastating for the lives of vulnerable older people, but are having a knock-on effect on the NHS."

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