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Patiently Waiting

Independent Age have produced a report called 'Patiently Waiting' about the long waiting times for hospital treatment in England, with more than five million people waiting for hospital treatment across the country.

They have also launched a petition calling on the Department of Health and Social Care and the NHS to work together and make sure everyone who is waiting for six months or longer for treatment has a personalised care and management plan.

The petition link

You can download the report below

Patiently waiting_2
Download PDF • 1.79MB

The report focuses on older people in England waiting for common elective or planned surgical procedures.

In the report, they:

  • Examine the issues affecting older people’s access to surgery, both pre-and post-pandemic.

  • Look at how longer waiting times affect people in later life.

  • Explore what older people say about their experience of waiting for surgery.

  • Consider what changes could make this experience better.

Independent Age are calling on the government and the NHS to take further steps to tackle the growing backlog of hospital treatments, and to ensure that people receive appropriate support, communications and treatment while waiting.

They urge the government and NHS to listen to older people’s voices and take this opportunity to transform the waiting period from one of anxiety to one of patient empowerment, preparation and holistic support.

Some key points from the report

  • Majority of older people waiting for treatment in daily pain as delays to surgery continue

  • Record NHS waiting lists lead to delays of more than 12 months for life changing operations for people over 65

  • 71% of older survey respondents reported being in pain while they wait, with over half experiencing pain every day

  • New Independent Age report makes series of recommendations on dealing with the backlog

Over half of people (52%) aged 50 and over waiting for an operation report being in pain every day, according to new research from older people’s charity, Independent Age.

The charity found that almost 1 in 3 people (36%) over 65 have been waiting more than 12 months for a planned surgical procedure, such as a hip or knee replacement.

With the number of people on NHS waiting lists now at a record high of 5.61 million, this new report also found that many people in later life were deteriorating rapidly as they waited for surgery. In addition to regular pain, over half (55%) said they struggled with day to day activities.


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