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Press release: Royal College of Physicians comment on NAO report on urgent care

The Royal College of Physicians has responded to the National Audit Office report which reveals that the NHS has not met key operational standards for unplanned or urgent care since before the pandemic.

Dr Sarah Clarke, president of the Royal College of Physicians, said:

“Without a step change in planning for the health service we are going to turn a crisis into a disaster. This report shows that the NHS wasn’t able to meet its targets before the pandemic, let alone now. More money is being spent, but patient access and experience are worsening. More people than ever are receiving unplanned and urgent care.

"We have been saying it for years and I’ll say it again: we need a fully funded workforce plan, now; we need the prevention of ill health at the heart of government plans, now; and we need investment in more hospital beds and the people to staff them, now.”

Notes to editors

For more information, please contact RCP Head of media Sara Nelson by emailing sara.nelson@rcp.ac.uk or calling 07792 903013. For urgent out-of-hours enquiries please call 07896 416409.

About the Royal College of Physicians

Everything we do at the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) is aimed at improving patient care and reducing illness. We are patient centred and clinically led, driving improvement in the diagnosis of disease, the care of individual patients and the health of the whole population, both in the UK and around the world.

Our 40,000 members work in hospitals and the community across 30 different medical specialties and range from medical students to retired doctors. The RCP is the oldest medical college in England.