According to experts, the NHS may be heading for a summer crisis after the recent winter crisis that has seen the healthcare sector stretched to dangerous levels.
The British Medical Association (BMA) has reportedly claimed that the performance of the NHS in the coming summer months is set to be as bad as it was over winter, where the NHS was faced with increasingly high levels of admissions.
If the NHS is set for a summer crisis, patients’ health – and lives – may well be at risk.
The BMA warns that, through July to September, there may be as high as 6.2 million Accident & Emergency attendances, with some 774,000 patients set to wait for longer than four hours to be seen. This is set to fall short of NHS targets during a period where the NHS usually enjoys a little respite through lower admissions in the warmer months.
The BMA further added that funding for the NHS in England is more than £7bn a year behind other European countries, and this amount could be set to rise to £11bn in the next three years.
The vicious circle continues, lawyers warn
Believe it or not, we don’t enjoy seeing patients harmed who then have to make a medical negligence compensation claim in order to get their life back on track, or even to survive.
We would much rather see a well-funded NHS system with low negligence cases and safer patients. But, until funding is increased and the NHS are able to cope with the increasing pressures they’re facing, patients are ultimately going to be put at greater risk; and with greater risk comes potentially more negligence claims.
Here at The Injury Lawyers we’ve spoken out about the vicious circle before; and it’s a circle that needs to be broken fast, for not only the sake of the patients who are harmed – and lose their lives – as a result of an underfunded healthcare system, but also for the sake of keeping legal costs down to a minimum.
The alternative could be more people needing to claim, which for many is a necessity in order to pay the mortgage and get lives back on track when serious complications and suffering are caused by avoidable errors.