Responding to the latest performance data published by NHS England, Richard Murray, Director of Policy at The King’s Fund, said: ‘These performance statistics for February offer the latest evidence of NHS performance continuing to struggle. Although February saw some improvements as winter pressures began to ease, the NHS is still failing to meet key targets such as A&E and cancer waiting times.
‘NHS England’s recent delivery plan promises a renewed focus on addressing these delays in A&E and cancer treatment, but getting back on track will be a momentous challenge. Hospitals are clearly under severe pressure and improving key services within the current budget is a highly ambitious goal.
‘While the government has announced an additional £2 billion for social care, relieving pressures on hospitals will also require additional investment in primary care and community health services.
‘With almost no growth in the health service budget from next year, the government will need to reconsider the NHS funding settlement if it wants to maintain the quality of care.’
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