These are remarkable figures:
Seen within 4 hours Waiting more than 12 hours
England 12 785 247, 81.5% (76.9%) 324 572, 2%
Scotland 1 252 051, 89.9% 2 360, 0.2%
Wales 620 608, 75.2% 45 757, 5.5%
N Ireland 434 468, 64.7% 25 132, 3.7%
So, even as they stand, NHS Scotland’s figures are far superior. Perhaps most shocking, is the fact that you were 27 times more likely to have to wait more than 12 hours in a Welsh A&E department. You were only 10 times more likely to have done so in England and, at first glance, the 4-hour waiting time performance does not see that much worse but it’s a lie and for two reasons.
First the figure above for 4 hour waits in NHS England is based on all 3 types of department including small units dealing with only non-life-threatening ‘elastoplast’ injuries which typically can hit nearly 100% treatment within 4 hours and thus be used to massage the overall results. Only NHS England gathers this data. English Type 1 full emergency departments, comparable to those in the rest of the UK have much worse performance.
Sneakily NHS England have released separate attendance figures for all types but for performance have combined them to hide the awful truth. But, I have worked out the average for the last 12 months. It’s 76.9%, only just better than that for Wales and way behind that of Scotland
Second, NHS England starts the clock again after patients are admitted while NHS Scotland counts from arrival in A&E, so the gap is probably even bigger.
NHS England stats for December 2019 are being massaged as we await them.