PERFORMANCE: East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust had 907 “long waiters” at the end of April – 45 of whom had been waiting more than a year.

The position with year-long waiters has improved since March, when the trust had 79, but each patient waiting more than 52 weeks can now attract a £5000 fine.

The trust’s plans to stop patients waiting too long include an additional mobile theatre which is being used at the William Harvey Hospital at Ashford. It is also considering bringing in two additional trauma and orthopaedic locum surgeons.