Targets could dictate your chance of survival in London


author image - oliviah

By Oliviah Rix-Taylor

on Wednesday 31 January 2018


NHS London

Delays on the NHS resulting from unmet targets could have sinister consequences for those left waiting. We have compared the performance of London NHS trusts with current targets to establish any serious delays in treatment.

Step into any London A&E ward or walk-in clinic and you will get a sense of the vast numbers of patients and the extensive waiting times. The pressure on the publicly funded NHS is mounting, with rising demand and increasing costs, but when your health is the most important thing, delays become dangerous.

What could delays mean for you?

Delays in treatment could result in the following;

  • Loss of earnings due to continued absence from work
  • Symptoms worsening
  • Illness spreading to other areas of the body 
  • Illness progressing into terminal stage

We have looked at London’s performance against NHS targets to see how they fare.

London NHS Hospitals

Accident and Emergency

TARGET- 95% of patients to be treated, admitted or referred within 4 hours. This target increases to eight and twelve hours with the target remaining the same respectively.

% of patients who were seen within 4 hours at an A&E ward in London

 

Figure.1 shows data from December 2017 from www.england.nhs

 

  • Out of 30 trusts, 18 of them did not meet the A&E targets.
  • The worst performing trust was North Middlesex hospital which was only able to treat, admit or refer 72% of its patients within four hours.

 

 

Cancer Care

The NHS in England have varied targets with regards to cancer care. The targets change according to waiting time till the first treatment occurs. The targets also vary according to cancer types.

Cancer care waiting time performance at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (31 days)

 

Figure.2 April 2017 data from www.emgland.nhs

  • University College London Hospitals performed perfectly for the 31 day target with regards to cancer treatments that involved radiotherapy or anti-cancer drugs.
  • For cancer cases that needed surgery, there was an unmet target and some patients were having to wait longer than 1 month to receive their potentially lifesaving surgery.

 

Cancer waiting times against NHS targets at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (62 days)

 

Figure.3 April 2017 data from www.england.nhs

  • All targets of cancer care were unmet when the time between the decision to treat and first treatment was two months.
  • Those greatest number of patients who had to wait longer than two months for treatment were those that had been referred from a national screening service.

 

 

Planned care for Non-emergency treatment

TARGET – 95% of patients must commence treatment within 18 weeks in England and Scotland.

 

The number of patients  (%)  who were treated within 18 weeks of referral at University College London NHS Foundation Trust

 

Figure.4 April 2017 data from www.england.nhs

 

  • The overall performance for treating patients with 18 weeks of referral was good
  • Neurosurgery had the greatest number of patients who were not treated within the target times.

 

Accident Line Direct

If you think your condition has worsened beyond a reasonable extent due to delays on the NHS then contact Accident Line Direct to discuss making a claim. There is no set guideline for delays in clinical negligence cases but if a solicitor can prove the following, then you will be entitled to compensation;

  • You were owed a duty of care from your healthcare provider
  • That duty of care was breached in an act of negligence
  • That negligence was a direct cause for your personal harm

The way in which medical negligence cases are handled usually refer to something called a Bolam test. This test determines whether other medical professionals would have acted in the same way given your medical case. If they deem that they would have acted differently and that the healthcare provider who treated you acted in an unreasonable way, then you will be owed compensation.

The NHS litigation authority (NHS Resolution)

The NHS litigation authority is a construct of the Department of Health and acts to review and resolve claims made against the NHS, amongst other things. If you were to make a negligence claim against a health care professional then the NHS litigation authority would handle the claim for the defendant (the NHS).

Clinical negligence cases can be complicated and there are several steps involved in receiving financial remuneration. At Accident Line Direct we have a wealth of knowledge and experience of the clinical claims industry at our disposal. Call us today to speak to our advisors for obligation free advice about your clinical negligence case.

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