Responding to the publication of NHS England’s combined monthly performance statistics for October 2017, Ruth Thorlby, Assistant Director of Policy at the Health Foundation, said: 'These latest data reinforce Simon Stevens’ warning yesterday that without further investment, patients will continue to wait longer for routine NHS care.

‘Despite the pressures the NHS and social care are under, there are some signs of progress, with reductions in the numbers of people being kept longer than needed in hospital.

‘However, emergency admissions via A&E are at the highest they have ever been in October. And the number of people waiting longer than 18 weeks for non-urgent treatment is at the highest ever since this target was set in 2011. This does not bode well for patients this winter.

‘As Simon Stevens rightly observed yesterday, waiting times will increase and progress on improvements in areas like cancer and mental health will stall without further investment. That is why we are calling for at least £4 billion more for the NHS in the Budget to stop patient care deteriorating next year.’

Notes to editors

Further details of our call for NHS funding can be found in The Autumn Budget 2017 Joint statement on health and social care, produced with The Kings Fund and the Nuffield Trust.

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