Publication - Strategy/plan

Healthcare waiting times: improvement plan

Published: 23 Oct 2018

Focuses on reducing the length of time people are waiting for key areas of healthcare.

22 page PDF

3.3 MB

22 page PDF

3.3 MB

Contents
Healthcare waiting times: improvement plan
Summary

22 page PDF

3.3 MB

Summary

We will invest a total of £535 million on resource and an additional £120 million on capital over the next three years to make a sustainable and significant step-change on waiting times. This comes in addition to our existing £200 million capital investment plan for delivering elective and diagnostic treatment centres. Our increased investment will support reforms to increase capacity where it is needed, reduce the number of people experiencing long waits, reshape delivery to ensure sustainable performance against targets in the future, and achieve the necessary shift in the balance of care to support this.

Over the next 30 months, the Improvement Plan will make a phased, decisive improvement in the experience of patients waiting to be seen or treated:

  • By October 2019
    • 80% of outpatients will wait less than 12 weeks to be seen
    • 75% of inpatients/daycases (eligible under the treatment time guarantee) will wait less than 12 weeks to be treated
    • 95% of patients for cancer treatment will be continue to be seen within the 31-day standard
  • By October 2020
    • 85% of outpatients will wait less than 12 weeks to be seen
    • 85% of inpatients/daycases will wait less than 12 weeks to be treated
  • By Spring 2021
    • 95% of outpatients will wait less than 12 weeks to be seen
    • 100% of inpatients/daycases will wait less than 12 weeks to be treated
    • 95% of patients for cancer treatment will be seen within the 62-day waiting-time standard

Similar action is being taken in parallel with mental health waiting times through the recent Programme for Government announcements and the ongoing Task Force led by Dame Denise Coia. Further details on this will be announced by the end of this year.

The Waiting Times Improvement Plan will:

  • Increase capacity across the system by expanding capacity at the Golden Jubilee Hospital (through 2019/20) and bringing unused physical capacity on stream (by October 2019) - in addition, we will accelerate the delivery dates of the existing Elective Centre Programme, meeting the commitment made in 2016 to invest £200 million in elective centres
  • Increase clinical effectiveness and efficiency by implementing targeted action plans for key specialties and clinical areas (from October 2018) and mainstreaming key productivity improvement programmes, such as rolling out the virtual attendance potential of 'Attend Anywhere' (from December 2018)
  • Working alongside local communities and those who use services, design and implement new models of care by accelerating whole-system design of local patient pathways through health and social care integration and driving regional service reconfiguration to the benefit of patients through the regional delivery and national Boards' plans (through 2019/20)

Action with the workforce is crucial to achieving this. Over the next 12 months, we will:

  • Enhance workforce capacity in key specialties such as urology, dermatology, and general surgery
  • Initiate investment of £4 million in domestic and international recruitment
  • Improve career pathways for key specialities such as Advanced Nurse Practitioners and General Nurses

Contact

Email: Philip Raines