Press Release

Minister Martin publishes hospital waiting list figures for December 2001

Figures released today (Friday 15th March 2002) by the Minister for Health and Children show that hospital waiting list figures stood at 26,126 at the end of December 2001. These figures represent a decrease of 219 on the comparable figure for September 2001 and an overall decrease of 1,731 or 6% in waiting list numbers relative to the comparable figure for December 2000.

Significant reductions have been achieved in some Health Board areas over the previous twelve months, for example: –

Southern Health Board down 28 %
South Eastern Health Board down 26 %
Midland Health Board down 25 %
Mid-Western Health Board down 23 %

The number of adults waiting for more than 12 months for treatment in the target specialties has fallen by 14% over the period December 2000 to December 2001. The number of children waiting for more than 6 months for treatment in the target specialties has fallen by 3 % over the same period.

Target Specialties

Since December 2000 there have been significant reductions in the waiting lists for target specialties: –

Cardiac Surgery down by 49 %
ENT down by 22 %
Gynaecology down by 17 %
Vascular Surgery down by 12 %
Orthopaedics down by 6 %

Hospital Activity 2001

Provisional figures for 2001 show that there were 920,000 patients discharged from hospital. This represents an increase of nearly 50,000 over the number of patients discharged in 2000 reflecting a near 6% increase in hospital activity in 2001. The figures for 2001 also show a near 13% increase in day case activity over 2000.

“I am committed to reducing hospital waiting lists and waiting times for public patients. I am confident that the measures announced in the new Health Strategy, such as increasing bed capacity and the new Treatment Purchase Fund, will result in significant reductions in waiting times for public patients.” the Minister said.