• Less than a third of providers have hit “reset” targets for A&E for July
  • NHS Improvement chief executive Jim Mackey says primary care access and school holidays were factors

Less than a third of trusts have achieved the new, lower accident and emergency targets for July, which they were set by regulators in the NHS “reset” documentHSJ analysis reveals.

NHS Improvement chief executive Jim Mackey has suggested insufficient primary care access and the school holidays were factors.

Jim Mackey

Jim Mackey

Jim Mackey: ‘The system has changed and we don’t fully understand how’

The A&E results for July showed 89 trusts had missed the individual targets set for them by NHS Improvement. Thirty-six met their targets, anda further 11 don’t have revised “trajectory” targets as they had not accepted sustainability and transformation funding. 

Organisations must hit the trajectory targets in order to receive their full STF payments. Many trusts will be relying on these payments to stay out of, or reduce, their financial deficits.

The national target is for 95 per cent of patients to be seen within four hours.

The news comes against the backdrop of an overall performance of 90.3 per cent for the English NHS in July – the first time the NHS has not hit the target in that month.

At the last meeting of NHS Improvement’s board, Mr Mackey said the performance in July showed a “very clear link in some parts of the country to school holidays. In some parts of the country it looks like a very clear link to primary care access issues, which was a big issue in January.”

He added: “The system has changed and we don’t fully understand how it has changed. The dynamics and the drivers have changed really dramatically.”

The July data showed 10 trusts with a performance below 80 per cent.

Referring to the performance for the first two months of the year, finance director Elizabeth O’Mahony said the sector had faced “sustained operational challenges”. “At previous boards we have talked about this being a bit of a blip but it’s now becoming more of a trend,” she said.

Thirty per cent of the sustainability and transformation funding for trusts is linked to performance targets: 10 per cent each for A&E, elective waiting times and waits for cancer treatment.

Trusts that achieved ‘reset’ A&E target

  • Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust
  • Hinchingbrooke Health Care Trust
  • Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals Trust
  • West Hertfordshire Hospitals Trust
  • Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust
  • East and North Hertfordshire Trust
  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust
  • St Helens and Knowsley Hospital Services Trust
  • Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust
  • Hampshire Hospitals Foundation Trust
  • Wirral University Teaching Hospital FT
  • Barts Health Trust
  • North Middlesex University Hospital Trust
  • University Hospitals Bristol FT
  • Heart of England FT
  • Northampton General Hospital Trust
  • North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust
  • Imperial College Healthcare Trust
  • The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King’s Lynn FT
  • Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals FT
  • Torbay and South Devon FT
  • Central Manchester University Hospitals FT
  • York Teaching Hospital FT
  • Warrington and Halton Hospitals FT
  • St George’s University Hospitals FT
  • City Hospitals Sunderland FT
  • North Tees and Hartlepool FT
  • South Warwickshire FT
  • Surrey and Sussex Healthcare Trust
  • Homerton University Hospital FT
  • Milton Keynes University Hospital FT
  • Harrogate and District FT
  • The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals FT
  • South Tees Hospitals FT
  • Gateshead Health FT
  • Luton and Dunstable University Hospital FT