The NHS in England missed several key targets for A&E admissions, cancer referrals, ambulance response times and NHS 111 calls in September as it braces itself for a busy winter period.
Against a target of 95%, 93.4% of patients attending emergency departments were seen within four hours in September. The figure was 94.3% the previous month. The A&E data for September is often cited as an indicator of pressure on the NHS as it prepares for winter.
Dr Mark Holland, president of the Society for Acute Medicine, has warned that A&E units are facing a a nightmarish scenario that will heap on the pressure in the buildup to winter. He told Sky News that a lack of staff and possible industrial action by junior doctors were very worrying at this time of year, adding there had been a rise in the number of patients needing emergency care.
Full story in The Guardian 13 November 2015