The latest figures from the NHS show that at the end of October 2021, there were 102,476 people on the waiting list at Barts Health NHS Trust. 8932 people had been waiting for more than a year for an appointment and 688 people had been waiting more than 2 years.
The rapid emergence of the Omicron variant is likely to provide yet more demand on the NHS and hospitals, and urgent co-ordinated action between the Government, the local NHS and Local Authorities are needed to address the staff shortages that are having a devastating impact on NHS waiting times.
Tower Hamlets Council is doing all it can to support local residents in these tough times to assist with Covid-19 prevention and help alleviate pressure on the NHS, so that our key workers can focus on providing the best care to all patients.
The below measures are just some of the things the Council’s public health team are doing to assist with the Covid-19 battle:
- Community Vaccine Clinics
- Vaccine Bus
- Mobile Testing Units around the borough
- Covid Community Champions
- Covid Ambassadors
However, the Council alone can only do so much. Nationally, the NHS is short of 100,000 staff, including 7,000 doctors and 40,000 nurses. In the Budget, the Chancellor did not set out a plan to recruit, train, and retain the staff needed to help solve this crisis.
Cllr Rachel Blake, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing said:
“The doctors, nurses, and other health care staff at Barts Health NHS Trust are doing amazing work, trying to see as many people as they can and providing quality care in unprecedented times.
“The Council continues to work with our local partners in order to ensure our heroes in the NHS are fully supported during these times of pressure. All we ask is that the Government provides much-needed assistance to bridge this gap to ensure that residents in the borough receive the best quality care.”
Mayor of Tower Hamlets John Biggs said:
“The NHS went into the pandemic with waiting lists at record levels, staff shortages of 100,000 in the health service and 112,000 social care vacancies.
“We need the Government to work with Local Authorities and the local NHS to come up with a plan to address the staffing shortages in the health and social care services, to ensure the timely and quality care that patients deserve during these uncertain times.”