Figures released by NHS England have revealed that 28,342 patients were waiting for non-urgent elective operations as of the end of June, up from 26,702 in May.

Average wait times remained at 14 weeks, 1,272 patients (four per cent) had been waiting longer than a year.

Spokespeople at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust said current circumstances are very unique, with monthly strike action making it difficult to work through the backlog of waiting patients.

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A spokesperson at the trust said: “The trust has indeed experienced a growth in the size of its waiting list, however it should be noted that owing to the ongoing monthly industrial action, across the course of this financial year, the Trust has been unable to provide the usual monthly capacity it would normally expect to offer. 

"The trust remains committed to meeting national targets and continues to offer appointments clinically prioritised and long waiting patients first.”

NHS England also released data on the number of A&E visits that occurred at Salisbury District Hospital in July, which saw a drop of one per cent from the previous month, from 6,589 to 6,527 visits.

There has also been a slight decrease in the level of visits seen in July 2021.

A spokesperson at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust said: “Although the data shows a decrease in our A&E attendances compared to two years ago, it’s hard to compare with where we are today, as various measures have been introduced that would impact this.

"For example, we have introduced ‘Same day emergency care’ (SDEC), the provision of care for emergency patients who would otherwise be admitted to hospital. This means that patients are admitted to SDEC via pathways other than A&E”.