'Patients could have to start booking appointments in A&E units, and those with only minor ailments wait many hours before they are seen, under a proposed shakeup of NHS targets.
NHS England chiefs are examining whether to relax the longstanding obligation to see 95% of A&E patients within four hours.
They are also under growing pressure from hospital bosses to ease another key NHS waiting time target – the duty to give patients non-urgent surgery within 18 weeks of being referred by their GP.
NHS England is reviewing its major service-wide treatment targets and will include any changes in its forthcoming 10-year plan. This will spell out how it will spend the extra £20bn it is due to receive by 2023.
It is studying the operation of urgent and emergency care services in parts of Denmark where all but the most ill patients are expected to ring to make an appointment at an A&E unit. If adopted in England, it would force many of the 22 million visitors to A&E every year to pre-book before arriving.
A senior NHS source close to the discussions said: “If you book an appointment you are seen within four hours. If you just turn up and are very sick you are seen immediately.'
Read more: A&E appointments system proposed in NHS targets shakeup
Did you like this article?
Thank you for your vote!
11 February 2019
Alexa-like bots will listen out for suicidal patients under NHS technology revolution
8 February 2019
Peril of the cut-price paramedics: Care assistants with just a few weeks of training are being sent on 999 calls
3 February 2019
A quarter of staff laid off by the NHS at a cost of £2billion are re-hired - by the National Health Service
31 January 2019
Controversial electric shock therapy approved on the NHS to treat depression is not safe and should be stopped, leading researcher argues
13 January 2019
Controversy over government's ‘revolving door’ is reignited as it's revealed new Health Minister worked for firm trying to win NHS contracts
From our advertisers
'Renegade' - The Life Story of David Icke (Official Trailer) - 2019 - And where you can see it...
Question A Massive Israel Lobby Group? You Anti-Semite! - The David Icke Dot-Connector Videocast
From our advertisers