By George Bowden
NHS waiting lists successful England could much than treble successful the coming months, the wellness caput has said.
Sajid Javid told the Sunday Telegraph officials warned the existent waiting database of 5.3 cardinal "could get worse".
Mr Javid said helium was shocked to larn during his archetypal days successful the occupation that 1 projection estimated the backlog could magnitude to 13 cardinal patients.
But helium said helium was assured astir remaining curbs volition assistance successful England connected 19 July.
Mr Javid, who became wellness caput 2 weeks agone aft his predecessor Matt Hancock resigned pursuing an apology for breaking social-distancing rules, said waiting lists were his priority.
He told the Sunday Telegraph: "What shocked maine the astir is erstwhile I was told that the waiting database successful going to get a batch worse earlier it gets better.
"It's gone up from 3.5 cardinal to 5.3 cardinal arsenic of today, and I said to the officials truthful what bash you mean 'a batch worse', reasoning possibly it goes from 5.3 cardinal to six million, 7 million. They said no, it's going to spell up by millions... it could spell arsenic precocious arsenic 13 million.
"Hearing that fig of 13 million, it has perfectly focused my mind, and it's going to beryllium 1 of my apical priorities to woody with due to the fact that we can't person that."
Among the solutions, Mr Javid said, would beryllium to wage backstage healthcare providers to proceed to dainty NHS patients and keeping virtual doctors' appointments.
A BBC investigation recovered successful May that astir a 3rd of hospitals person seen agelong waits for attraction summation - with much than 10% of patients going a twelvemonth oregon much without treatment.
In March, astir 5 cardinal patients were waiting for country - the highest fig since modern records began.
It comes arsenic lawsuit numbers roseate supra 30,000 for the 4th time successful a enactment connected Saturday amid concerns implicit the determination to extremity astir of England's remaining curbs aboriginal this month.
Prof Helen Stokes-Lampard, chairwoman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme the academy was "cautious astir issuing dire warnings" but she had go "profoundly concerned" implicit the past mates of weeks astir the thought of lifting restrictions successful England connected 19 July.
"There seems to beryllium a misapprehension that beingness volition instrumentality to mean from past and that we tin propulsion distant each the precautions and, frankly, that would beryllium dangerous," she said.
A fewer hospitals successful the UK person announced that non-urgent country is being postponed due to the fact that of rising admissions of Covid patients, precise precocious diligent numbers astatine A&E, and unit self-isolating, the BBC's wellness exertion Hugh Pym reported.
However, the nexus betwixt Covid, hospitalisation and decease has been weakened by the vaccine rotation out, with admissions to infirmary and deaths beneath the levels seen past winter.
Being afloat vaccinated reduces the hazard of symptomatic Covid-19 by astir 90%, and hospitalisation by up to 94%, depending connected the jab.
England fans attending Sunday's Euro 2020 last against Italy astatine Wembley volition beryllium offered on-the-spot jabs astatine a adjacent vaccination centre.
Prof Stephen Powis, of NHS England, described the vaccine arsenic the "best defence" and urged fans to "be a squad subordinate and get some your vaccinations successful what is simply a crippled of 2 jabs".
The NHS volition besides aerial an advert during TV sum of the last to promote radical who person not been vaccinated to get their jab.
So far, 45.7 cardinal archetypal doses person been distributed by the NHS crossed the UK - much than 86% of each UK adults.
Meanwhile, experts person warned it is imaginable to drawback 2 coronavirus variants astatine the aforesaid clip aft an unvaccinated 90-year-old pistillate successful Belgium became sick with the Alpha and Beta types simultaneously.