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Health bosses to discuss ‘unavoidable’ delay to treatment times

PUBLISHED: 18:00 01 September 2020 | UPDATED: 18:00 01 September 2020

Patients have had to wait longer to receive treatment during the coronavirus pandemic Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Patients have had to wait longer to receive treatment during the coronavirus pandemic Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

Health bosses are set to discuss plans to reduce patient referral times - which have fallen dramatically due to the coronavirus outbreak - later this week.

The board of East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) will meet via video link on Thursday morning, with referral to treatment (RTT) times on the agenda.

ESNEFT’s RTT position for July was 43.44% - well below the national standard of 92%.

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Andy Yacoub, chief executive of Healthwatch Suffolk, said: “There is undoubtedly mounting pressure on staff and organisations to process referrals for those who have not been able to access hospital services as they normally would have before and during the pandemic.

“The highest priority is ensuring quality of treatment is unaffected while any risk of infection is kept to an absolute minimum.

“With imposed limitations on patient numbers and new policies on how clinical areas are maintained, it is unavoidable that waiting times will be impacted.”

MORE: Latest coronavirus infection rates show slight rise in cases – check the numbers in your area


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