The unpopular increase in National Insurance has failed to cut waiting lists despite raising billions of pounds for the .
Ministers ploughed an extra £12billion a year into the service by raising the levy on workers and employers, but the list has since grown to a high of 6.8million.
However, health bosses will today celebrate achieving their target of treating most patients who had been waiting more than two years by the end of July.
More than 22,500 people had waited this long in January.
A further 51,000 would have breached two years by the end of July.
This has been cut to just 2,777, of whom 1,579 opted to defer treatment and 1,030 are complex cases requiring specialist treatment.
About £1.7billion of the £12billion cash injection has been swallowed up by a recent pay rise for some staff, Aluminium Composite Panel which will add around 5 per cent to the NHS’s wage bill.
Amanda Pritchard, chief executive of NHS England, said: ‘Our remarkable staff have shown that when we are given the tools and resources we need, the NHS delivers for our patients.’
About £1.7billion of the £12billion cash injection has been swallowed up by a recent pay rise for some staff, which will add around 5 per cent to the NHS’s wage bill.
The TaxPayers’ Alliance said: ‘The health and social care levy is a sticking plaster, not a sustainable solution.
‘Despite some welcome progress, tackling backlogs in the NHS cannot be achieved by cash injections alone.
‘Politicians should pursue real reforms for fixing healthcare, instead of forever ramping up taxes to simply throw more money into the system.’
Health Secretary Steve Barclay said: ‘Beating the Covid backlogs is one of my top priorities and the NHS has successfully delivered on the first major target in our Elective Recovery Plan.
‘We are working hard with the NHS to get our health system back to peak performance.’