Waiting list for diagnostic tests in East Sussex reached 7,253 in July - up nearly 40% on 2019

NHS waiting lists in East Sussex for basic diagnostic tests - including MRI and CT scans - grew by nearly 40% between June 2019 and July 2023, up to 7,253.
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The research from the House of Commons Library, commissioned by the Liberal Democrats, also shows that 12% of people waited more than 6 weeks for one of these tests in July (the NHS target is less than 1%).

The 15 types of tests that make up the list provided by the Commons Library include MRIs, CT scans, Echocardiography, and DEXA scans.

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The proportion of people waiting over six weeks for a diagnostic test is well above the NHS target of less than 1%. In July, in East Sussex it sat at 11.9%, just under 12 times higher than the target. The percentage of people waiting more than six weeks has also spiked since 2019, from under 1% in June 2019, to 11.9% in July, a near twelve fold increase.

Councillor James MacClearyCouncillor James MacCleary
Councillor James MacCleary

Councillor James MacCleary, Lewes Liberal Democrat, said: “What this Conservative government has done to the NHS is nothing short of a national scandal. Thousands of patients in our area are forced to wait in pain and discomfort, anxiously wondering when they will get a diagnosis, let alone treatment.

"I am contacted every week by anxious residents struggling to access basic NHS services. Whether it's getting a GP appointment, a referral for a scan or access to mental health services, it just seems to be getting harder and harder.

“Ministers are missing in action in this NHS crisis, and it’s patients who are suffering. We need urgent action to get on top of this mess, end these appalling delays and ensure our community gets the local health services that we deserve.”

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Lewes MP Maria Caulfield said: “While we are seeing more people being referred for tests, the crucial thing is that waiting times are coming down. The new diagnostic centres in places like Falmer mean that compared to just after Covid when people were waiting for two years for these tests we have now got this down to under a year with most waiting a few weeks. I would like to thank all local NHS staff who have made this happen.”

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