Keith Davis discusses how clinical and commercial partnerships can deliver operational efficiencies. He explains why collaboration is vital to help reduce waiting lists and free capacity.
The significant impact of COVID-19 on the number of patients waiting for urgent and non-urgent procedures, coupled with the year-on-year increase in waiting lists, requires rapid capacity growth. Private sector companies provide a range of managed services that could benefit Trusts and Integrated Care Systems (ICS), including access to equipment, funding for additional capacities – such as mobile wards, theatres and endoscopy units to facilitate waiting list solutions by increasing clinical capacity.
Clinical partnerships can reduce the administrative burden for staff and drive waiting list reduction. Working with an external partner can provide additional resources and solutions to support the required waiting list reductions and help to improve patient care.
With over 5.72 million patients on waiting lists in England and over 340,000 patients already waiting more than a year, the challenge of post-pandemic recovery will remain for some time. The challenge of ramping up services to provide above 85% of pre-pandemic activity by September 2021 has been significant for the NHS. However, reducing waiting lists will require operating well above 100% of pre-pandemic activity, and this will present further challenges over the coming months and years. Given this pressure, the only way to effectively increase the number of patients receiving the required healthcare is with greater efficiencies, newer equipment and improved or additional facilities.
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