I am extremely concerned by national reports of delayed operations and appointments, outrageously long waiting times at A&E departments, and patients now being treated in corridors as an everyday occurrence.
According to Dr Taj Hassan, an A&E consultant in Leeds, “We are seeing conditions that people have not experienced in their working lives”; Dr Nick Scriven, president of the Society for Acute Medicine says “The position is as bad as I’ve ever known”; while Tracy Bullock, the chief executive of Mid Cheshire hospitals NHS foundation trust says “I’m 34 years in and I’ve never seen anything like this”. In Stoke, Dr Richard Fawcett, a senior doctor in emergency medicine at the Royal Stoke hospital in Staffordshire, has publicly apologised “for the third world conditions of the department due to overcrowding.” (see https://www.theguardian.com/…/nhs-hospitals-told-to-take-un…)
The government must listen to these professionals, who have dedicated their lives to caring for the public, when they tell us that the system is breaking.
I have today written to Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to ask for an urgent update on the situation locally, and to offer my full support to our overworked and underpaid NHS staff. The blame for this crisis lies firmly at the door of the Tory government who since 2010 have mismanaged and underfunded the NHS while at the same time massively cutting social care budgets, creating a perfect storm.
The Tories simply cannot be trusted to look after the NHS or social care, and the sooner we get a Labour government the better.