Boris Johnson has today apologised to the family of a four-year-old boy who was forced to lie on a hospital floor for hours after being admitted for suspected pneumonia.
Jack Williment-Barr was taken to Leeds General Infirmary by ambulance last week only to be left in a clinical treatment room as there were no beds.
He spent the night lying on a pile of coats, attached to an oxygen mask, while the department was experiencing its busiest week since April 2016.
Speaking this morning on the election trail in Grimsby, the Prime minister was asked if he had an apology for the family.
He said: ‘Yeah, I do, and this is exactly why we need to move on.
‘We’re putting £34 billion into the NHS now, this is the biggest investment we’ve seen in modern times but we need to drive it forward.’
Jack Williment-Barr (pictured) was taken to Leeds General Infirmary by ambulance last week only to be left in a clinical treatment room as there were no beds
Mr Johnson said there is ‘so much more that needs to be done’, adding: ‘That is why we just need to unblock the politics of this country and move forward.’
Speaking to LBC the Prime Minister said he wanted to apologise to ‘everyone who has a bad experience’.
The Prime Minister added: ‘By and large I think the NHS do an amazing job, and I think they deserve all praise for the service they provide.
‘But they do need investment and that’s why we’re doing it now.
‘But they need investment from a One Nation government that really cares and understands – that’s us that cares and understands – and you need long-term funding.’
Mother Sarah Williment, a primary school assistant from Leeds, described the situation as a ‘crisis’. She said: ‘[Jack] spent eight-and-a-half hours in A&E… Jack wasn’t provided with a bed on a ward until 13-and-a-half hours later.’
Jack was eventually diagnosed with influenza A and tonsillitis.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock thanked ‘tireless’ hospital staff, adding: ‘Leeds has been allocated £600million of funding as part of our commitment to build 40 new hospitals.’
One-fifth of patients in A&E must wait more than 12 hours for a bed, experts claim
More than 1 in 20 patients who went to A&E last week waited at least 12 hours for a bed, experts have claimed.
All patients are supposed to be seen within a target of four hours, but thousands are being ‘stranded on a trolley in a corridor’ as the NHS faces its worst winter crisis in history.
The Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) analysed data from 50 A&E departments which provide around one third of the UK’s acute hospital beds.
More than 1 in 20 patients who went to A&E last week waited at least 12 hours for a bed, experts have claimed (file image)
Its report shows in the first week of December, some 5,171 of the 103,099 patients who attended these hospitals were stuck in A&E for more than 12 hours.
Only 68 per cent of patients were seen within the target of four hours – the worst performance on record and 10 per cent lower than the same point last year.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock (pictured) said: ‘Our hospitals are treating a record number of people, and with increasing demand we are putting a record £33.9billion extra funding into our NHS’
In recent days there has been chaos at A&E departments, with dozens of ambulances queuing outside hospitals because hospital beds were unavailable.
The crisis was made worse by a norovirus outbreak that closed more than 1,100 beds last week.
The RCEM’s Dr Katherine Henderson said: ‘Many patients are now getting often life-changing news while stranded on a trolley in a corridor.
‘This cannot be right, and we must strive to put an end to ‘corridor care’. We are clearly in the worst state we’ve ever been in as we enter the true winter season.’
Monthly NHS figures showing the scale of the crisis will be released on Friday.
But the RCEM warns NHS reports do not reflect the true scale because A&E waiting times are measured from when a decision is made to admit a patient, rather than when they arrived.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: ‘Our hospitals are treating a record number of people, and with increasing demand we are putting a record £33.9billion extra funding into our NHS.’