The effect of COVID-19 on NHS waiting lists has been well documented, with recent estimates placing the number of people waiting for NHS treatment at over 5 million.
With the NHS facing ongoing staff shortages and challenges as a result of the pandemic, patients face even longer waiting times, which cannot be addressed until the health service is given the necessary resources to meet patient needs.
WAITING LISTS FOR GYNAECOLOGY SERVICES
One of the areas which has been hardest hit during the past year is gynaecological services. In May 2019, there were 15,647 women awaiting gynaecological services in the UK. By April 2021, this figure had risen to a staggering 380,000. In the past year alone, there has been a 34% increase in the number of women waiting for gynaecology services, which has the third longest waiting lists in the UK health service.
Even before the pandemic, an increase in public awareness surrounding gynaecological health and the promotion of diagnostic screening and surveillance programmes had placed gynaecology departments in the UK under increased pressure. The widespread delays to gynaecology services during the pandemic – which saw all non-essential services postponed and staff redeployed to critical care wards – led to significant delays in treatment delivery.
Today, demand for gynaecology services is at record levels, and waiting lists are longer than ever before.
Thousands of women are awaiting treatment for painful conditions, whilst many more are still awaiting diagnosis. The knock on effect of this delay – as in many other areas of healthcare – is likely to be life-threatening for many women. Even non-urgent gynaecological conditions such as endometriosis, postpartum urinary incontinence and menopause symptoms can cause a great deal of discomfort and pain, and negatively impact a woman’s day-to-day life.
ADDRESSING THE CHALLENGES
The UK government has pledged to spend £1bn on helping NHS services to reduce waiting times and get services back to pre-pandemic levels. This financial injection will help NHS trusts tackle waiting lists by: improving access to diagnostic tests (through better access to facilities such as mobile scanning); supporting innovative care solutions (including supporting patients at home); facilitating the recruitment of more staff, and enabling trusts to expand their healthcare offering, for example through the provision of additional surgeries during evenings and weekends.
HOW MEDINET CAN HELP
Medinet’s teams of experienced health professionals provide fully-managed solutions in any setting. Our support is tailored to the specific needs, capacity and objectives of your department. In as little as two weeks, our teams can meet your staffing shortfall and provide high quality gynaecological services, reducing waiting lists and ensuring that patients receive the urgent care that they need.
We provide gynaecology services throughout the UK and ROI, providing patients with urgently needed treatment and supporting Trusts who are working to reduce and sustain lower waiting times for female patients.
Our consultant-led teams can treat a full range of gynaecological conditions, including screening services and surgical solutions, whether during evenings, weekends, or 7 days a week.
We provide unrivalled patient safety, offering excellent clinical outcomes whilst maintaining regulatory compliance at all times.
GET IN TOUCH
If you need support to reduce your waiting list for gynaecological services, Medinet can help. Get in touch to find out more about how our bespoke service can reduce waiting lists, provide you with long-term sustainable improvements and enhance the patient experience.