The healthcare system is on the brink of a crisis because too many patients who should have been treated sooner are arriving at hospitals with emergency cases.
This is the view of David Prior, head of the Care Quality Commission (CQC). In his first speech since taking his position, he said that that more needs to be invested in community care so patients become less of a burden on the NHS further down the line.
He believes that almost half of hospitals are providing services are either "not terribly" good or substandard. He also criticised GPs for opting out of home visits and out-of-hours care.
"If we don’t start closing acute beds, the system is going to fall over," Mr Prior stated.
"Emergency admissions through Accident and Emergency (A&E) are out of control in large parts of the country … That is totally unsustainable."
He added that patients are often at the mercy of their local care provider because they have no real alternatives.