In total, two-thirds of hospital A&Es were deemed to be substandard for patient safety; 11% were rated as inadequate and a further 55% told they needed to improve.Patients are also having to wait longer for cancer treatments and to rearrange operations that have been cancelled.
The Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) annual review of health and social care in England found staff shortages, underfunding and “unprecedented” demand are forcing the NHS to operate at “full stretch”.
Across the board, it report found that the NHS is struggling to cope with a surge in the number of people suffering modern-day illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes.
Sir David Behan, Chief Executive of the CQC, said: “As people’s health and care needs change and become more complex, a model of care designed for the 20th Century is at full stretch and struggling to cope with 21st Century problems.
Services are at breaking point and the quality of future care is at risk, the report said, because the health system is “struggling to cope with 21st Century problems” including illnesses such as obesity, heart diseases and dementia.
The problems arise as resources are increasingly unable to match rising demand.
At 91 per cent, bed occupancy between January and March 2017 was the highest ever recorded, and significantly above the 85 per cent target.