An influx of coronavirus patients has led to record-breaking waiting times for hospital care in England.

There is now a 12-year high for people waiting over a year for hospital treatment, according to the latest NHS England figures.

The NHS target time of 18 weeks for routine care has been missed for almost 2 million people, with 111,000 left for over a year.

According to NHS England, the number of people starting cancer treatment and getting urgent checks is lower compared with one year ago.

It comes as hospitals in Liverpool scale back non-urgent operations to help them cope with a second wave of coronavirus patients.

Meanwhile, other NHS trusts based in north west of England as well as others in north east and Midlands, are also preparing to postpone routine surgery such as joint replacements and hernia repairs amid a sharp increase in patients taken seriously ill with coronavirus.

There are now 500 people a day are being admitted to hospital with COVID-19, which represents twice as many as a fortnight ago.

In the community:

NHS England said “progress” was being made, suggesting more patients were starting to be seen.

The UK is in “perilous” position, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said, adding that the ability of the NHS to see non-coronavirus patients was under threat.

Health minister Nadine Dorries has predicted there could be a “critical” point for hospitals within 10 days.

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