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One in three forced to miss work due to NHS waits

One in three working adults have missed work in the past year while waiting for medical appointment or treatment, according to new research.

One in three adults have missed work in the past year while waiting for an NHS appointment or treatment, according to new research.

The research, which was commissioned by the Liberal Democrats, shows young adults have been particularly affected, with more than half forced to miss work in the past year.

Prime Minister removes NHS from top five priorities

This comes after the Prime Minister removed the NHS from his top five priorities. His new focuses are reducing debt, cutting tax, backing British business, securing energy and delivering world-class education.

The BMA said this “wouldn’t be so bad” is the government was making progress on their original pledge to save the NHS. Instead, waiting lists are growing each month, even when there are no strike.

“Ensuring the future of the NHS should be right at the top of his to-do list, not slipping quietly off the bottom,” said Professor Philip Banfield, BMA council chair.

British public affected by waits for GP and dental appointments as well as treatments and surgeries

The research also found that:

  • One in five working adults have been unable to go to work while waiting to see their GP
  • One in seven have had to take a significant period of time off work as they wait for NHS treatment or surgery
  • Just over one in ten missed work while waiting for an emergency dental appointment.

The Lib Dems say the treatment backlogs and a shortage of doctor’s appointments are “damaging economic growth and will continue to impact both the economy and people’s quality of life without a significant rescue package.”

‘Rescue package’ desperately needed

The political party is now calling on the government to invest an extra £13 billion into the NHS to deliver on a robust series of measures to support the health service through the winter and beyond.

This includes recruiting 8,000 more GPs, funding 200 new radiotherapy machines and reversing cuts to public health services in local communities.

“This Conservative Government cannot continue to turn a blind eye. It’s clear that growth is not possible unless we first tackle the ever-growing NHS treatment and GP backlogs that are holding millions of people back and having a devastating impact on quality of life,” a spokesperson said.

Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said the case for investment is “self-evident” and has urged the Chancellor to announce more funding for the NHS in his Autumn Statement.

“[Research shows] that for every £1 invested in health there is a return of £4 to the wider economy, and getting people off waiting lists will help many back to full fitness, reducing the limits on their ability to work.

“The health service is still short on staff, is coping with the financial fallout of industrial and working out of crumbling buildings no long fit for purpose. That’s to say nothing of a social care sector in disarray. The Chancellor has an opportunity this week to use some of the reported tax windfall to invest in the health service and boost the economy,” he said.

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