HUNDREDS more patients joined the waiting list for routine treatment at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay Trust in April, figures reveal.

As the NHS waiting list across England topped 5 million patients for the first time, the Health Foundation called for urgent investment to bring the situation under control.

NHS England statistics show 24,542 patients were waiting for non-urgent consultant-led care at University Hospitals Of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust at the end of April, 600 more than 23,942 the month before.The figure was also a ​23 per cent increase on the 19,988 on the waiting list in April last year.

Across England, the number of people waiting for treatment rose by 171,720 from almost 5 million in March to 5.1 million in April – the highest number since records began in August 2007. The Health Foundation said the backlog offered a "stark reminder" of the task ahead for the NHS.