Gwent hospital waits getting longer

Gwent hospital waits getting longer

Gwent hospital waits getting longer

First published in News

THE number of Gwent patients waiting more than 36 weeks for treatment in the area's hospitals topped 1,800 during May - its highest level in years.

And close to 1,000 of these patients had waited longer than 40 weeks, as hospitals struggle to cope with demand and capacity issues.

The problem is not confined to Gwent, with big increases in waits of more than 36 weeks from referral to treatment reported Wales-wide in May.

But big increases since the end of March will be particularly worrying for health boards that had invested heavily - with the help of millions of pounds of extra funding from the Welsh Government - in an effort to reduce levels of long waits.

No patient in Wales should have to wait more than 36 weeks from when they are referred by their GP to the beginning of definitive treatment, according to the Welsh Government-set target.

By the end of May however, close to 15,500 patients across Wales had waited longer, a 21 per cent increase on April, and 46 per cent up on the end of March, traditionally the month where the aim has been to eliminate long waits.

That did not happen this year however, and as the reality of another financial year of extremely challenging budget targets has bedded in, and extra surgical work to reduce waiting lists has been reined in, the lists have soared.

In Gwent hospitals, the number of patients waiting more than 36 weeks from referral to treatment reached 1,823 by the end of May, almost 36 per cent up on the end-of-April figure (1,342). And since March 31, the number of patients in that category has more than doubled, from 878 (up 107 per cent).

More than half of the 36-week target breaches in Gwent were in trauma and orthopaedics (982) up from 729 in April and a reflection of demand and capacity issues.

There were also more than 500 patients who had waited longer than 36 weeks for oral surgery, and indications of rising numbers in specialties such as general surgery (109, compared to 56 in April), ophthalmology (87, against 50 in April), and ear, nose and throat (79 against 37 in April).

Increased emergency demand has contributed to problems, with bed availability squeezed, particularly since extra capacity opened for the winter has been reduced.

Aneurin Bevan University Health Board is developing a plan to manage waiting lists and times, and it is likely that extra capacity outside Gwent will be required, as the budget permits.

Comments (8)

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5:47pm Tue 15 Jul 14

landyman3030 says...

Which means sending more patients to England. The Health boards in Wales have had to borrow money from the WAG to get through to the new financial year and then pay back the loan. When is it going to dawn on Carwyn that the system is getting worse. Why are we unable to manage our health system. Devolution working? You'll have to show me where.
Which means sending more patients to England. The Health boards in Wales have had to borrow money from the WAG to get through to the new financial year and then pay back the loan. When is it going to dawn on Carwyn that the system is getting worse. Why are we unable to manage our health system. Devolution working? You'll have to show me where. landyman3030
  • Score: 1

7:11pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Independentvoter says...

'ABHB are developing a plan to manage waiting lists and times'

Haven't they got one yet ? I thought Andrew Goodall had a plan oh yes to move I forgot.
'ABHB are developing a plan to manage waiting lists and times' Haven't they got one yet ? I thought Andrew Goodall had a plan oh yes to move I forgot. Independentvoter
  • Score: 3

7:15pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Dave on his Soapbox says...

...it's not just those waiting for their first assessment/treatment
...... once you've been seen any follow up treatment or review on progress is always delayed....
I had treatment on an eye condition before Christmas with a review of surgery in January....with a change in medication....and told I would be seen in 3 months........6 months later and despite leaving a message on their answer line and emailing ...still no appointment.
...it's not just those waiting for their first assessment/treatment ...... once you've been seen any follow up treatment or review on progress is always delayed.... I had treatment on an eye condition before Christmas with a review of surgery in January....with a change in medication....and told I would be seen in 3 months........6 months later and despite leaving a message on their answer line and emailing ...still no appointment. Dave on his Soapbox
  • Score: 3

7:46pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Magor says...

Cameron should take back control to Westminster.WAG cant run the NHS. Why should we have to put up with a worse system than England?
Cameron should take back control to Westminster.WAG cant run the NHS. Why should we have to put up with a worse system than England? Magor
  • Score: 2

9:44pm Tue 15 Jul 14

gingertom says...

How did andrew goodall have a promotion in the light of the state of ABUHB? It beggas belief! The NHS CEO's get promotion time and time again. Why? The royal gwent has had c-diff for years they cannot get rid of it.
We need an enquiry into the welsh nhs asap:

https://www.assembly
wales.org/epetition-
list-of-signatories.
htm?pet_id=1019
How did andrew goodall have a promotion in the light of the state of ABUHB? It beggas belief! The NHS CEO's get promotion time and time again. Why? The royal gwent has had c-diff for years they cannot get rid of it. We need an enquiry into the welsh nhs asap: https://www.assembly wales.org/epetition- list-of-signatories. htm?pet_id=1019 gingertom
  • Score: 1

10:07pm Tue 15 Jul 14

gingertom says...

Until they stop consultants using the NHS lists to emotionally blackmail patients into paying private things will not improve, orthopaedics is a prime example.
Huge NHS lists makes more money for consultants whilst patients struggle with awful pain, worry how they are are going to work, pay bills and often the long waits mean permanent nerve damage. A patient quality of life becomes zero. Family life is non existant. It is a very isolating existance you are just about surviving but not living you see others pain free and they just have no idea what a struggle day to day life is ann clwyd is not exagerating.
Until they stop consultants using the NHS lists to emotionally blackmail patients into paying private things will not improve, orthopaedics is a prime example. Huge NHS lists makes more money for consultants whilst patients struggle with awful pain, worry how they are are going to work, pay bills and often the long waits mean permanent nerve damage. A patient quality of life becomes zero. Family life is non existant. It is a very isolating existance you are just about surviving but not living you see others pain free and they just have no idea what a struggle day to day life is ann clwyd is not exagerating. gingertom
  • Score: 2

10:27pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Llanmartinangel says...

Never mind eh. Another £1.6 Million announced for the Welsh language announced just last month. You can have your last rites in both tongues.
http://m.bbc.co.uk/n
ews/uk-wales-politic
s-27885539
Never mind eh. Another £1.6 Million announced for the Welsh language announced just last month. You can have your last rites in both tongues. http://m.bbc.co.uk/n ews/uk-wales-politic s-27885539 Llanmartinangel
  • Score: 3

9:02pm Wed 16 Jul 14

gingertom says...

We need an enquiry into the welsh NHS:

https://www.assembly
wales.org/epetition-
list-of-signatories.
htm?pet_id=1019
We need an enquiry into the welsh NHS: https://www.assembly wales.org/epetition- list-of-signatories. htm?pet_id=1019 gingertom
  • Score: 0

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