Quarterly performance of the NHS provider sector: quarter 3 2018/19

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Between October and December 2018, more patients were treated and discharged in Emergency Departments (EDs) within four hours. However, the focus on treating high numbers of patients across EDs was one of the key reasons the provider sector as a whole reported a year-to-date deficit of £1.2 billion.

Key findings between October and December 2018:

  • the NHS treated 5.4 million patients within four hours between October and December 2018 – more than the 5.3 million for the same quarter last year. However, the rise in patient demand meant the percentage of patients being treated within the four-hour target reduced slightly from 87.9% to 87.7%.
  • the number of staff vacancies has reduced by 5,000 compared to the previous quarter, and by 1,046 compared to October to December 2017. NHS trusts now have 100,500 vacancies. 
  • the number of patients spending more than 21 days in hospital was reduced by 1,950 over the quarter helping to free up beds for those patients that need them most. The number of patients spending more than 21 days in hospital at the end of December was 18,112 compared to 18,866 at the same period last year. 

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