This is a terrible and enduring backwash from the pandemic which is set to be made much worse by omicron. This story tells us:
UK hospitals have cancelled at least 13,000 operations over the last two months as they struggle to cope with record demand for NHS care and people sick with Covid-19.
Figures collected by A&E doctors showed that 13,061 planned surgeries had to be called off during October and November because of shortages of beds and staff.
However, the cancellations occurred at just 40 of the several hundred NHS hospitals across the four home nations, so those 13,061 are likely to be a major underestimate of the scale of the problem.
Dr Adrian Boyle, a vice-president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM), which published the data, said the cancellations represented “a stark warning for the months ahead”.