NHS trusts again recorded a month-on-month reduction in the number of patients waiting over 78 weeks for treatment, although the flagship target to eliminate this cohort by March remains a tall order, with winter pressures set to crank up.
The overall waiting list rose from 6.7 to 6.8 million between June and July, a record high, with the number of those who have waited over a year rising from around 356,000 to around 378,000.
However, the 78-week breach figure fell from 53,911 in July from 51,838 in June. It had stood at nearly 60,000 in May.
This represents a significant achie