Deeply concerning patient impact of long waits for care

04 February 2024

Responding to Liberal Democrats analysis of figures showing that one in four UK adults say their mental health has been negatively affected in the past month by waiting too long for a GP or hospital appointment, NHS Providers chief executive Sir Julian Hartley said:

"It's deeply concerning that so many people are not getting the care they need, when they need it.

"These shocking figures show the detrimental impact of long waits on people's physical and mental health.

"Trust leaders are doing all they can to address huge care backlogs across physical and mental health services.

"The severe capacity crunch of staff and resources in hospitals and community services must be addressed so that trusts can better meet growing demand.

"For example, over nine in 10 mental health trust leaders have told us they are worried about whether they can meet demand this year.

"Long-term investment in, and support for, prevention and early intervention would significantly help relieve pressure on stretched services.

"Trust leaders are also extremely worried about out-of-date buildings and facilities. More capital investment is needed to ensure safe and therapeutic environments for patients."