Patient numbers, waiting times and
infection figures at the Trust
How long will I wait is a question often at the top of a patient's mind.
In the early 1990s waits of more than six months for a first outpatient appointment were not uncommon, and tens of thousands of people across the country waited more than two years for an operation.
But since 2008, the longest you should wait after being referred by your GP until you start your treatment is 18 weeks - that is, unless you choose to delay treatment or there is a clinical reason why you should wait longer. Wherever possible, you will wait less than this, with the average wait nationally being around eight weeks. Any hospital appointments, tests, scans or other procedures that you may need before being treated will all happen within this maximum time limit.
In the NHS the phrase used is 'referral to treatment'. This is the time a patient waits from initial referral, for example by a GP, to the start of treatment, sometimes as an outpatient and sometimes admission to hospital.
There are clear rules about measuring 'referral to treatment' waiting times, and what has to be completed within 18 weeks. 18 weeks is about delivering the right care, at the right time, of the right quality and without unnecessary delays. There are clear rules about measuring how long patients will wait and what is included in the 18 weeks.
More can be found on the Guide to waiting times on the NHS Choices website.
Number of patients this month
For February 2013:
- 106,155 outpatients attending our hospital year to date for the first time;
- 237,018 follow-up outpatients and 24,189 day case spells;
- 6,971 elective inpatient spells and 37,881 non-elective spells;
- 13,419 regular day attendances.
There were 0.06% breaches in the Outpatients 13 week target in February. Average waits nationally are about eight weeks for admitted patients and four weeks for non-admitted patients
The Trust had 5,936 Accident & Emergency department attendances in February and 92.08% of them were seen, treated or discharged within the four hour standard.
Of all the urgent suspected cancer referrals, 93.7% met the two-week maximum wait from GP urgent referral to first outpatient appointment.
In February, there were no cases of MRSA (target 1 for 2012/13) and 1 case of Clostridium Difficile (target 25 for 2012/13) and hand hygiene compliance was 97.67%. You can read more about how we tackle infection here.
What do we mean by referral to treatment (RTT)?
Referral to treatment (RTT) is the time waited from initial referral (by GP, A & E, other practitioner with referral rights) to the start of treatment (which for some patients will be given as an outpatient and for others will mean admission to hospital).