Thursday 3 January 2019 / 12:01 PM Jonathan Ashworth / NHS

NHS New Year stats – Jonathan Ashworth responds

Jonathan Ashworth MP, Labour’s Shadow Health and Social Care Secretary, responding to the latest weekly winter sitrep data, said:

“The New Year performance statistics reveal an NHS under considerable strain this winter after years of financial squeeze, chronic staff shortages and swingeing cuts to social care provision.

“Thanks to the efforts of NHS staff who again have shown extraordinary effort, professionalism, leadership and dedication, services are not quite as bad at this point as last year.

“But let’s be under no illusion: hospitals remain dangerously overcrowded, nearly 40,000 patients have had to wait in backed up ambulances so far this winter, while 54,000 sick patients endured waits of over four hours in November and 12 hour breaches more than doubled compared with last November.

“This is still unacceptably far from the standards expected, adding up to a winter of misery for patients and their families.

“In the coming days ministers must outline a credible plan to both restore standards of patient care where constitutional targets are met, while recruiting and training the staff our NHS now desperately and so obviously needs.”