Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

British Red Cross: National Health Service is Experiencing a ‘Humanitarian Crisis’ | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55365469

Health officials have hit back at the claims there is a ‘humanitarian crisis’ in UK hospitals saying the NHS was wrongly being likened to a war zone. Credit: Christopher Furlong/Christopher Furlong

The British Red Cross and the government are engaging in a heated dispute over whether the National Health Service (NHS) is experiencing a “humanitarian crisis” as hospitals and ambulance services struggle to keep up with rising demand.

The British Red Cross has said NHS will face the “toughest winter ever” where the figures for September show 53,000 people left an emergency department in England before receiving treatment, up 24% compared with September 2015.

On Friday, medical officials said more patients could die because of the chaos engulfing the NHS. The deaths prompted claims that the health service was “broken”, and long waits for care, chronic bed shortages and staff shortages were leading towards what the head of Britain’s A&E doctors called “untold patient misery.”

Health professionals have warned of a crisis now, but Mr. Simon Stevens, the chief executive of NHS England, said: “2018 is poised to be the toughest year.”

That was because funding has been “back-ended” to end of the decade and will actually fall in real terms in the 2018-19 financial year, he explained.