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Waiting for an appointment or surgery?

07 September 2021


As a result of the pandemic, we have seen the number of people waiting for hospital treatment in England reach almost five million. An increasing number of patients are now waiting over a year.

Norfolk and Waveney has a high number of people waiting, mainly due to a higher than average population over the age of 60. The age of local population is a factor in this - those areas with some of the longest number of people waiting tend to have an older population, while those with the lowest rates had the youngest, who are less likely to need hospital treatment.

Steps are being taken to address these waiting times, with all three acute hospitals in Norfolk, including the James Paget, planning several initiatives to reduce the time you are waiting and to ensure our patients get the treatment they need.

We are working across the three hospitals to share one waiting list so that if there is more availability at one hospital, you may be offered an appointment somewhere else. We are continuing to offer virtual appointments, although if you need to be seen face to face these appointments will be offered.

If you are currently on a waiting list for elective surgery, like a knee or hip operation, then you will be contacted by a clinical team, as soon as they are able to treat you. We are currently trying to treat the most poorly patients, including patients waiting for cancer treatment then those who have been waiting the longest.

It is important to note that that you can also help yourself by looking after your physical and mental health, especially if you are waiting for surgery, as this can improve your recovery.

We have pulled some resources together to try and help you with this:

Keeping well while waiting - tools to help you keep as fit and healthy as possible while waiting for your hospital appointment:

Active Norfolk - a range of gentle exercises that can be done at home;

Managing bone, joint or muscle pain - support tools and exercises to help you manage your pain at home;

Norfolk Wellbeing service - help and support to improve wellbeing and manage stress, low mood and anxiety.  Offer a range of flexible services tailored to meet your specific needs;  - 0300 123 1503 lines open 8am – 8pm

We know this can be a frustrating time for you as you wait for treatment; please be assured that we are doing all we can.

Our staff continue to work tirelessly to make  sure our communities receive the best and most timely treatment they can including continuing to manage patients with COVID-19 and supporting an extensive vaccination programme.

Every possible effort is being made to try and treat people as quickly as possible.

If you have concerns about your care you can always contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALs).

Contacting PALS

The PALS Team is available from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays.) Please phone us on Great Yarmouth 453240. If the line is busy you may get an answering machine - please leave a message and we will return your call as soon as we can.

Submit a comment or query online - Visit the Contact us page to submit a message directly to the PALS staff.

Complaints - Please telephone Great Yarmouth 453240 or email   

Write to us - PALS & Complaints Team, James Paget University Hospitals Foundation Trust, Lowestoft Road, Gorleston, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. NR31 6LA.