Almost 4,000 extra patients were admitted to hospital last year at the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust compared to five years ago, figures reveal.
Health experts say there is an “urgent need” for more staff to address a surge in demand in the NHS, driven in part by the increasing number of people living with complex long-term conditions.
NHS Digital data shows 160,680 patients were admitted to hospital at the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust in 2018-19. That was 3,905 more than during 2014-15 – an increase of 2%.
Richard Murray, chief executive of health think tank the King’s Fund, said the evidence suggested a decades-old policy of reducing the number of hospital beds had “gone too far”, with more beds and increased investment in the community now needed.
He said: “Critically, if the NHS is to open more hospital beds it will need more people to staff them, but the NHS is already in the grips of a major workforce crisis. A credible plan to increase staff numbers is urgently needed.”
Average waiting times faced by patients across the country for an elective admission were a week longer in 2018-19, rising to 61 days. At the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, average waits increased from 52 to 78 days.
Dr Rob Harwood, consultants committee chair at the British Medical Association, said underfunding, a lack of beds and chronic staff shortages meant doctors and other NHS staff were being placed under undue pressure.
A spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Social Care said: “We are providing the NHS with a record cash funding boost of £33.9 billion extra a year within the next five years, which we are enshrining in law.
“Our record funding will allow us to put 50,000 more nurses, 6,000 more GPs and 6,000 more primary care professionals onto the frontline to deliver a world-class NHS.”