‘Tsunami of unmet need’: Care watchdog contradicts government with dire NHS warning

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England’s NHS and care services face a “tsunami of unmet need”, the health watchdog has warned, despite ministers insisting that hospitals face a surge in demand.

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Alarm was raised as the number of daily coronavirus infections reached 50,000 for the first time since the end of the lockdown and fears the NHS is headed for a severe winter crisis.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Care Quality Commission, Ian Trenholm, said the NHS and care staff “cannot be expected to work harder than ever before if we are to get out of this winter safely”.

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“What we are seeing is that many services are at capacity, and in many cases beyond capacity, and problems that traditionally could have been diverted can no longer be diverted, ” They said.

Organizations needed to come together and act differently, he warned: “If these things don’t happen, a lot of people don’t care what they desperately need this winter.”

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The clear picture of CQC is contrary to the assurances of the government that the system can cope.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid and Health Minister Edward Argar have both dismissed concerns that the NHS faces continued pressure – a “Plan B” of Covid measures will only be implemented after this point – with ambulances queuing outside hospitals. And even with some patients waiting almost 50 hours for bed .

The regulator said it had “serious concerns” about certain areas of emergency care in England, including delays in ambulance handovers in hospitals that “endanger the safety of patients”.

CQC’s chief inspector of hospitals, Professor Ted Baker, said hospitals and ambulances were facing a “tough winter”, describing the long wait at A&E as “unacceptable”.

“As the pressure builds up on the system, more such problems are going to develop,” he said.

“I think the pressure levels are very intense at the moment and I think we are very concerned going into winter that they could get worse, which will create additional problems for the system in responding to that.”

Mr Baker said employees were exhausted with high levels of burnout.

The CQC said staff pressure is being felt across the country and warned of a seriously deteriorating picture in social care, where the vacancy rate rose from 6 percent in April to 10 percent this September.

In some parts of the country, care companies are closing their doors due to nursing shortages, leaving patients to find new homes, while some are stuck in hospitals because care services are unavailable.

The annual State of Care report found that social care workers were moving to better-paying jobs in the hospitality and tourism industries. The sector has been hit by a demand for compulsory vaccination by the government, which may have prompted some employees to leave, adding 120,000 vacancies.

The report found that more than half of A&E and urgent care services were rated as “needing improvement” or “inadequate.”

While 95 percent of GP practices were rated as good or excellent, Sentinel said there are concerns about patient access. Gram panchayats have been criticized for not providing more face-to-face appointments.

It said that the move to online or digital counseling “not everyone has benefited and some have struggled to get the appointments they want”.

The CQC said there are “certain areas of concern” with respect to GP staffing numbers, adding that the number of qualified permanent GPs is falling, with figures in June 2021 down about 3 percent compared to June 2017.

Dr Jennifer Dixon, Chief Executive of the Health Foundation, said: “Today’s CQC report is further evidence of the urgent need to invest in the NHS and social care workforce – or what many more see as service struggles without care and treatment. To meet the demand and remove the backlog created by the pandemic.”

Age UK said older people are stuck in hospital when they are fit for discharge, because there is not enough care to support them at home.

This is “deeply ominous” for the NHS and “tragic and unfavorable” for the patients concerned, said charity director Carolyn Abrahams.

On Thursday night, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) announced a £162m fund to help recruit thousands of new carers.

The new funds will be available to local councils to help recruit employees and help existing employees stay in their jobs. DHSC said the money would be available by the end of March 2022.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “I would like to thank care workers for their commitment and tireless efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic – we owe them a debt of gratitude, which I wish to deliver through ambitious, sustainable social care reform. Determined to repay what makes their skills a priority. and goodness. “

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Credit: www.independent.co.uk /

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