Hundreds of thousands of people had to wait over four hours to be seen after arriving at A&E in December. (Image: NationalWorld/Mark Hall)

A&E waiting times: NHS hospitals in England with worst emergency department figures – where has longest waits?

Thirteen NHS hospital trusts saw fewer than half of their patients within the four-hour Accident and Emergency target window in December, according to NHS England.

Almost three-quarters of a million people had to wait more than four hours to be seen after going to A&E in England in December, with more than three out of five patients affected at one NHS hospital trust.

Figures published by NHS England and analysed by NationalWorld show only 10 out of 151 hospital trusts managed to meet A&E waiting time targets in December. At least 95% of patients should be admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours of arriving at emergency departments.

But the figures show only 65% of patients were seen within the target window last month. Of the 2.3 million patients who attended A&E, 711,000 (35%) had to wait longer. Hospitals saw the highest ever number of A&E attendances during the month, NHS England said, with patient numbers up by 5% compared to November, and by 22% compared to December 2021.

NHS England praised the efforts of hard-working staff, which saw elective care delivered for 70,000 more patients in November compared to the same month in 2019, with the waiting list falling for the first time since the start of the Covid pandemic. But the figures lay bear the extraordinary pressures on emergency care, with the health service also recording the highest ever number of the most urgent ambulance callouts, and of 999 calls answered.

The performance against the four-hour A&E target has deteriorated rapidly over the last year. In November, 69% of patients were seen within four hours, and in December 2021 it was 73%. The 95% target was last met in July 2015.

There were 13 NHS trusts that saw fewer than half of their patients within the target window last month. Here we reveal the trusts with the worst performance.

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