- The number of elective operations has almost halved during the pandemic
- Smith & Nephew and other NHS suppliers have seen sales drop as a result, while facing the prospect of routine surgeries not returning to normal levels until 2021
The number of non-emergency surgeries performed by NHS England trusts almost halved last year, new figures reveal, as resources were funnelled towards tackling the Covid-19 crisis.
The data show for the first time the scale of the fall in activity in operating theatres across the country, after hospitals cancelled swathes of appointments to clear beds for coronavirus cases. The drop in operations has come as a blow not only for the many elderly and vulnerable people awaiting treatment, but also for the healthcare firms that depend on sales of surgical equipment for these procedures.