After a challenging start to the year, we have continued to feel pressures across our services due to the number of patients requiring care, the continued prevalence of COVID-19 and the number of patients we are unable to discharge from hospital until further care plans are put in place.
Despite this, we have made good progress in reducing the number of patients waiting over 104 weeks and 52 weeks for their procedure. We now have approximately 70 patients (a reduction of nearly 50%) who have been waiting over 104 weeks and we are on track to ensure they are booked in and we achieve our goal of no patients waiting over 104 weeks by the end of March. We are also continuing to reduce patients waiting over 52 weeks in line with our plan but recognise that we still have a lot of people waiting longer than we would want.
Anyone waiting for a hospital appointment, operation or treatment, can access the NHS My Planned Care Patient Digital Platform which is available from 24 February. This gives them direct access to the latest average wait time information, as well as helpful advice and support whilst they wait.
Updated weekly, the site is easy-to-use and is ‘open-access’ so their carer, friends and relatives can also access this information. We encourage people to look at this site where they may find the information they need before contacting their GP or hospital for an update about any elective procedures they are waiting for.
As well as waiting time information, the platform also includes helpful details about how to manage pain, mental health, keeping healthy and accessing financial help and other local support whilst they wait. It can also help people to prepare for their appointment/operation, including how to make a plan for their care and treatment alongside their healthcare professional.