To save heart patients from dying, take action now on the expanding waiting lists.


To save heart patients from dying, take action now on the expanding waiting lists.

THOUSANDS of cardiac patients may perish as a result of ever-lengthening waiting lists.

The British Heart Foundation estimates that more than 500,000 people will be locked in lineups within two years as a result of Covid, which is more than double the size of pre-pandemic waiting lists.

In the first year of the pandemic, delays in cardiac care resulted to roughly 5,800 more fatalities from heart and circulatory disorders in England alone. The charity warned yesterday that quick action was needed to prevent more fatalities that could have been avoided.

Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, the organization’s medical director, said: “Even before the epidemic, waiting lists for crucial cardiac care were much too long.”

The pandemic has subsequently pushed the NHS to breaking point, wreaking havoc on the 7.6 million individuals in the UK who suffer from heart and circulation disorders.

“It’s not only about alleviating symptoms, as essential as that is, when it comes to cardiovascular disease diagnosis and treatment delays; it’s about saving lives. Thousands of additional fatalities from heart and circulation disorders have already occurred as a result of the epidemic, and delays in treatment are likely to have contributed to this awful toll.

“At this critical juncture, the government must take immediate action to prevent more lives from being lost to treatable cardiac problems. Addressing the huge backlog in heart care is merely the beginning.

“We also need a clear plan to rebuild capacity in the NHS and address the pandemic’s impact on health workers, as well as considerable and sustained funding. Many families would be spared unnecessary heartache if we got this right.”

The charity warned today in a shocking analysis that a perfect storm of missed prevention and treatment chances, an enormous backlog, and a cliff-edge drop in research funding could mean a generation of lost progress.

Thousands of deaths are expected if the NHS is not adequately funded, according to the report.

Cardiology waiting lists might reach 550,385 in January 2024 in the worst-case scenario. Furthermore, compared to pre-pandemic levels, the number of persons waiting for heart surgery could nearly double by February, reaching at 15,384. Even before the pandemic, around 225,000 people in England were on waiting lists for heart diagnosis or treatment, with 8,400 of them awaiting heart surgery.

The backlog could take another five years to return to pre-pandemic levels.

James Wilkinson, 47, a self-employed father of two from West Yorkshire, was featured in “Brinkwire Summary News” in 2019.


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