The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has highlighted failings in NHS acute care provision that could be bringing many clinical services to the point of collapse.
A new report from the organisation reveals there are one-third fewer general and acute beds now than was the case 25 years ago, despite emergency admissions increasing by 37 percent in the last decade alone.
Moreover, nearly two-thirds of people admitted to hospital are over 65 years old and a growing proportion are frail and affected by dementia, but many hospitals are not equipped to cope, leading to a poor standard of care.
As such, the RCP is calling for a number of improvements to NHS acute care, including a promotion of patient-centred care and an accompanying redesign of services, plus greater access to expert services seven days a week.
Sir Richard Thompson, president of the RCP, said: "Excellent care must be available to patients at all times of the day and night. We call on government, the medical profession and the wider NHS to work together to address these problems."
The conclusions have been backed by the NHS Confederation, which stated that political backing is needed to implement the necessary changes.See all the latest jobs in Medical Devices