NEARLY 2,000 York people told they needed a hospital stay waited more than a year to be admitted for treatment, figures show.

Around 1,945 patients needing non-emergency care at York's hospital trust had waited more than a year to be checked into hospital, following the initial decision to admit them, in the year to March.

It represents roughly seven per cent of admissions at York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Among these patients, 375 people waited over 18 months.

The Trust said "significant" work was underway to deal with the backlog of care while a spokesperson for the NHS warned that staff are "working flat out".

It comes after the Patients Association charity said people should be given "honest timescales" for treatment and advice.

The organisation's CEO Rachel Power said: "The NHS must understand the impact on patients when planned care is cancelled or when you've no clear idea of when you may get care, and act in response.

"This means clear communication to patients and giving clear expectations about what might happen next. We know it will take many months before the waiting lists come down, but until they do, patients waiting must be supported and not left to wonder about what may happen to them."

Waiting lists have become lengthier as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic lingers on.

The figures do not include planned admissions where there is a personal or medical reason behind a delay.

Over at York's hospital trust, the number of patients waiting a year or more for any type of treatment peaked at 2,500 in February 2021.

A spokesperson for York's trust said: “We are making significant progress on plans to tackle the backlog of care.

"The number of patients waiting 62 days or more for initial cancer treatment is now below 2019 levels, despite the Trust seeing a higher number of referrals each month.

"The number of patients waiting a year or more for any type of treatment reached a peak of 2,500 in February 2021. By the end of June, this number had reduced to 1,488.”

Meanwhile a spokeswoman for the NHS said caring for 450,000 Covid-19 patients in hospital had had an inevitable impact on the health service's ability to deliver care for less urgent conditions.

The NHS has planned £1.5billion of funding to support the continued recovery of waiting lists and cancer services. She said patients awaiting treatment had been reviewed by clinicians and were supported while on the waiting list.

The spokeswoman said: "This week the NHS laid out its plan for the next six months, which includes £1.5billion of funding to support the continued recovery of waiting lists and cancer services.”

"NHS services have continued to be available for patients who needed them and staff are currently working flat out to get services back to pre-Covid levels."

Sir Robert Francis, chairman of Healthwatch England said patients needed clear and individualised information about the next steps in their treatment.

He said an emphasis on interim care like physiotherapy, pain relief and mental health support could make the waiting experience more bearable and prepare people for surgery.