An independent investigation will be held into the performance of the NHS, the Health Secretary has announced.

Writing for The Sun, Wes Streeting says the probe will be aimed at “diagnosing the problem” so that the Government can “write the prescription”.

“It’s clear to anyone who works in or uses the NHS that it is broken,” Mr Streeting said.

“Unlike the last government, we are not looking for excuses. I am certainly not going to blame NHS staff, who bust a gut for their patients.

“This Government is going to be honest about the challenges facing us, and serious about solving them.”

Mr Streeting said the investigation will be led by former health minister Lord Ara Darzi, who he has asked to “tell hard truths”.

“Honesty is the best policy, and this report will provide patients, staff and myself with a full and frank assessment of the state of the NHS, warts and all,” he said.

“The NHS has been wrecked. This investigation will be the survey, before we draw up plans to rebuild it anew, so it can be there for all of us when we need it, once again.”

His comments come as a new report revealed progress tackling the NHS waiting numbers has “stagnated” and “long waits remain endemic in the NHS”.

(PA Graphics)

Experts from the Nuffield Trust point out that Labour has inherited a waiting list for pre-planned hospital treatment of around 7.5 million in England – a 66% increase since the start of the pandemic.

While progress has been made in some areas, such as cataract surgery, waits for some major surgeries have been slower to get back to pre-Covid levels, experts said.

The NHS in England is to publish the latest waiting time data – the first since the new Government took office.