NHS Constitution, Patient Choice and Current Elective Waiting Times

The NHS is there for us from the moment we are born. It takes care of us and our family members when we need it most. The NHS Constitution was created to protect the NHS and ensure it will always do the things it was set up to do when launched in 1948: provide high quality healthcare that is free and for everyone.

No government is able to change this constitution – essentially a promise that the NHS will always be there for you – without the full involvement of staff, patients and the public. The NHS Constitution sets out what you can expect from the NHS, your rights as a patient, the quality of care you’ll receive, the treatments available to you and your right to comment and complain.

The Constitution commits the NHS to provide convenient, easy access to services within the national standard waiting times of 18 weeks. The 2014 [Patient] Choice Framework says that If you need to see a consultant or specialist as an outpatient, you can choose the organisation that provides your NHS care and treatment anywhere in England for your first outpatient appointment. You can also choose which consultant-led team led by a named health care professional will be in charge of your NHS care and treatment (employed by the organisation you choose) for your first outpatient appointment.

New hospital adult waiting times tool for practices and patients. In collaboration with Midlands & Lancs CSU we have designed a new basic local NHS and Independent Sector providers spreadsheet waiting times report (344 KB) .

We will update this report monthly using the latest national published data. It is only a snapshot but it does provide an ‘at a glance’ a good picture of the health or pressure of all local acute providers and complements information GP practices can get for time to first appointment on Choose & Book (E-referrals). View the basic supporting information and user guide document here (54 KB) . For any queries or suggested improvements or even just general feedback please email neildavidwalker@nhs.net.

Read more about the NHS Constitution on the NHS Choices website.