Waiting times for treatment continue to stagnate
One in seven people remain on Labour's Welsh NHS waiting lists, according to new figures published this morning.
The number waiting over 36 weeks for treatment is still just under 20,000. According to the Labour government's own target, it should be zero.
In total, 423,711 people were waiting to start treatment in Wales at the end of November. That figure stood at just 187,000 when Carwyn Jones became First Minister in December 2009.
England's 'referral to treatment' statistics for the same month are yet to be published.
In Wales, the number of people waiting more than 8 weeks for specified diagnostic services now stands at 19,058 - or 25.7 per cent of patients on the list. In England, figures published yesterday show that just 1.2 per cent of people had been waiting over six weeks for one of the 15 key diagnostic tests at the end of November 2014.
Welsh Conservative Shadow Minister for Health, Darren Millar AM, said:
"Waiting times for patients in Labour-run Wales continue to stagnate and the gulf in performance between the health service in England and Wales shows that patients here are getting a raw deal.
"Despite the efforts of hard-working staff, Labour's record-breaking cuts to the NHS budget continue to bite and delays for tests and treatment remain amongst the worst they have ever been in Wales.
"Behind every statistic is a personal story of unacceptable delay that simply shouldn't exist. For the elderly and the vulnerable in particular - that means unnecessary suffering and misery.
"For the sake of everyone languishing on waiting lists across the country, Welsh Labour must get a grip on this performance and give Welsh patients their best chance of a return to good health."
Welsh Government 'referral to treatment' times are available here:
Welsh Government NHS diagnostic and therapy service waiting times are available here:
NHS England Monthly Diagnostic Waiting Times are available here:
When published, NHS England Consultant-led Referral to Treatment Waiting Times Data 2014-15 (for November) will be available herehttp://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/rtt-waiting-times/rtt-data-2014-15/