Therese Coffey’s ‘ABCD’ vow to slash NHS backlog

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And she said her priorities for improving the NHS will be based on the acronym “ABCD” – ambulances, backlog, care, doctors and dentists.

It comes as shocking figures reveal of the 24,272 dentists with NHS contracts in England, almost 4,000 are treating just one patient a month.

Around 6.7 million people are waiting for routine hospital treatment. And heart attack and stroke patients now wait an average of an hour for an ambulance. The target is 18 minutes.

Once at hospital almost 30,000 people a month spend more than 12 hours on A&E trolleys. But Ms Coffey, who is also the Deputy Prime Minister, said the Government must focus on the social care crisis to ease pressure.

“There are thousands of people who don’t need clinically to be in hospital,” she said.

“That’s why it’s this combination of focusing on social care and health is going to be critical.”

She added: “I’m very conscious that we want to be promoting what we can do better for patients, so they can get their appointments, whether for a doctor or a dentist to tackle the backlogs, the ambulances and of course social care.”

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