NHS Providers responds to record-high waiting list of 7.7 million

14 September 2023

Responding to the NHS performance statistics published today, showing the waiting list has reached a record 7.7 million, Miriam Deakin, director of policy and strategy at NHS Providers said:

"It's extremely concerning to see the waiting list hit another record high amid escalating pressure on the NHS, including A&Es facing their busiest summer since 2019.

"Trust leaders remain focused on improving timely patient care and have managed to reduce ambulance response times for the third month in a row.

"However, challenges including severe staff shortages, capacity constraints – including of beds and equipment – and ongoing strikes are hindering vital progress on performance targets.

"This impacts the whole system, including hospital, ambulance, mental health and community services.

"Nearly one million appointments have had to be postponed due to the strikes since December, which significantly hampers trusts' efforts to bear down on backlogs.

"With more strikes on the horizon, including coordinated action between junior doctors and consultants for the first time, even greater disruption looms.

"It's vital the government and unions re-open talks to find a resolution to the pay dispute."

You can follow our analysis of the latest performance figures from NHS England through our NHS Activity Tracker campaign.