One in 10 patients needing A&E care at Southern Health Trust waited longer than four hours to be dealt with last month, figures show.

The King’s Fund health think tank said there is “no shying away from the reality that the NHS is deep in crisis”, after A&E performance dropped to the worst on record across England at the end of 2022.

NHS guidance states that 95% of patients attending accident and emergency departments should be admitted to hospital, transferred elsewhere or discharged within four hours.

But Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust fell behind that target in December, when just 90% of the 3,094 attendances at A&E departments were dealt with within four hours, according to figures from NHS England.

It means 10% of patients needing A&E care at Southern Health Trust waited longer than four hours to be seen last month, in line with 10% in November, and up from 4% in December 2021.

All of last month's attendances were via minor A&E departments – those which treat minor injuries and illnesses such as fractures, cuts and bruises.

The 95% standard has not been met across the NHS in England since July 2015 – and last month, just 65% of A&E attendances were admitted transferred or discharged within four hours, marking the worst performance on record.

This compared to 73% in December 2021 and 80% in December 2020.

Performance was worse in type 1 departments – those with full resuscitation equipment and 24-hour consultant-led care and which count for the majority of attendances nationally – where just 50% of patients were seen within the target time in December, down from 61% during the same month last year, and 72% two years earlier.

Siva Anandaciva, chief analyst at the King’s Fund, said: “Since modern records began, A&E performance is the worst it has ever been and not a single NHS trust in the country is managing to meet the national target to be seen within four hours.

NHS medical director Stephen Powis said staff are continuing to work hard in the face of "extreme pressures".