The King's Fund responds to NHS Improvement's report on the performance of the NHS provider sector

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Responding to today’s report from NHS Improvement on the performance of the NHS provider sector in the second quarter of 2018, Siva Anandaciva, Chief Analyst at The King’s Fund, said:

'Today’s report is a warning that the NHS is heading for another very tough winter, with rising demand for services and staff shortages taking an increasingly heavy toll on patient care.

'We have become used to key targets being missed, but the increase in the number of patients forced to experience long waits for care is a significant concern. The number of people stuck on hospital waiting lists for more than a year or spending more than 12 hours in A&E is worryingly high, and far worse than at this time last year. Tackling long waits for hospital treatment must be a top priority for NHS England’s clinical review of waiting times.

'Despite the eye-watering financial deficits reported by many hospitals, the NHS as a whole remains close to financial balance, underlining the need for significant reforms to NHS financial management in the forthcoming NHS long-term plan.

'As we get closer to the publication of the long-term plan, it is becoming increasingly clear that the new funding will not be enough to address all the pressures facing the service – ‘resetting’ performance back to desirable levels is highly ambitious. It is therefore vital that the plan dedicates sufficient funding for developing new models of care, building on the work currently taking place in integrated care systems up and down the country.'

Notes to editors

For more information or to request an interview please contact: Gemma Umali, Press and Public Affairs Manager, The King's Fund: 0207 307 2583,

The King's Fund is an independent charity working to improve health and care in England. We help to shape policy and practice through research and analysis; develop individuals, teams and organisations; promote understanding of the health and social care system; and bring people together to learn, share knowledge and debate. Our vision is that the best possible health and care is available to all.