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How a FIFTH of Britain is waiting on the NHS: Poll lays bare dire state of health service – and reveals over HALF of country finds it ‘difficult’ to see GP

  • The poll, carried out by the Office for National Statistics, surveyed 2,542 people
  • It showed a third of those felt the wait to be seen made their condition worse
  • And one in six adults on an NHS waiting list, had been waiting for a year or more 
  • The damning findings come after waiting lists in England hit an all-time high 

A fifth of Britons are waiting for NHS care, official data suggests ahead of what is expected to be the health service’s worst ever winter.

Thousands of people were quizzed about their difficulties accessing healthcare.

Twenty per cent revealed that they were waiting on a hospital appointment, imuran notice test or medical treatment.

More than half also said it was difficult or very difficult to see a GP, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) survey.

Shockingly, the ONS data showed more than one in six adults on a waiting list for NHS treatment said they had been waiting for a year or longer

A fifth of Britain is waiting for an NHS hospital appointment, test or medical treatment, a damning new poll by the Office for National Statistics has revealed (file photo of a patient receiving an MRI scan)

The poll laid bare the dire state of the health service, which today was hit by its biggest ever strike.

Up to 100,000 nurses walked out of dozens of hospitals, in a row over pay.

Thousands of ambulance workers are set to strike next week, piling even more pressure on a system already crippled by routine pressures.

The poll, of 2,542 adults, comes after waiting lists in England hit an all-time high of 7.2 million in October.

Of the millions waiting for NHS care, 26 per cent revealed that they had been in the queue for at least six months.

More than 7.2million patients in England were stuck in the backlog in October (red line)— or one in eight people. More than 400,000 have queued for at least one year (yellow bars)

Cancer performance data shows that just six in 10 cancer patients started treatment in October within two months of an urgent referral from their GP (red line). The figure is the second-lowest logged since records began in 2009. NHS targets set out that the figure should be at least 85 per cent. It means 5,728 people waited more than eight weeks to start cancer treatment (blue bars)

Meanwhile, more than a third felt being forced to wait for treatment was making their condition worse.

The data also showed how difficult it is to see a GP in person, with four in ten patients only offered telephone appointments despite wanting to be seen face-to-face.

Waiting too long for a GP appointment was the second biggest issue reported to negatively affect people’s health and well being, after having to cut back on heating. 

In other related news… 

  • Everything you need to know about today’s NHS nurses strikes: How many staff have walked-out? What do they want? And will action carry on in the New Year? 
  • Don’t fall over on the ice today… you might face even WORSE delays than feared, TV doctor warns as devastating NHS strikes begin 
  • NHS’s worst EVER week for ambulance handovers: More than 12,500 patients rushed to hospital by 999 crews faced delays of over an HOUR before getting treated… as Strep A fears pile massive pressure on crippled 111 teams with 60 PER CENT increase in calls 

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