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NHS beyond full stretch and preparing for most difficult winter ever

NHS providers, representing every hospital, mental health, community and ambulance service in England, says that its annual survey shows a much higher level of concern about the coming winter than ever before.

172 board level trust leaders from 114 trusts responded to the survey and the results revealed that:

  • 87% said they are extremely concerned about the impact of winter on their trust and local area. When asked the same question last year, the figure was 56%, ahead of what proved to be one of the toughest winters in the history of the NHS.

  • 84% are worried or very worried about their trusts having the capacity to meet demand for services.

  • 85% are worried or very worried that insufficient investment was being made in social care in their area.

  • 94% are moderately or extremely concerned about staff burnout.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, said, "The message from trust leaders is loud and clear: judging by the pressure the NHS is currently under, the service is heading for the most difficult winter in its history.

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