Press Release

Minister Martin releases waiting list figures for June 2003

The Minister for Health and Children released figures today (4th November, 2003) on hospital waiting lists and waiting times.

Waiting Times

In-patient Waiting Times for Adults

The reduction in the number of adults waiting longest for in-patient treatment is continuing. The number of adults waiting over 12 months for treatment in the nine target surgical specialties has fallen by approximately 43% (7,407 to 4,252) from June 2002 to June 2003.

In-Patient Waiting Times for Children

The number of children waiting over 6 months for treatment in the nine target surgical specialties has decreased by 57% (from 1,576 to 676) from June 2002 to June 2003.

Very significant progress has been made in tackling waiting times in the nine target surgical specialties. It is now the case that all Health Boards outside of the eastern region are reporting that, in general, those adults currently reported to be waiting more than 12 months and those children reported to be waiting more than 6 months have either been offered treatment under the National Treatment Purchase Fund(NTPF) or have conditions that are complicated or outside the remit of the NTPF. Those adults currently on waiting lists who are reported as waiting in excess of 12 months are mainly in one of the following categories:-

  • waiting for a complicated procedure,
  • did not wish to travel outside their area for treatment,
  • wish to wait to have the procedure under their own consultant,
  • not medically suitable to have their treatment at the present time.

The following hospitals have reported no adults waiting more than 12 months for in-patient treatment: St. JamesĀ“ Hospital, Portlaoise General Hospital, Wexford General Hospital, Mayo General Hospital and Roscommon County Hospital.

Waiting Lists

The overall number of patients on hospital waiting lists stood at 28,130 at the end of June 2003. This figure includes both in-patient waiting lists and day case waiting lists and represents a decrease of 2% or 589 on the figure for the quarter ending March 2003 (28,719).

In-Patient Waiting Lists

Hospital in-patient waiting list figures stood at 16,658 at the end of June 2003. This is a decrease of 4,916 or 23% since June 2002.

Day Case Waiting Lists

Hospital day case waiting list figures stood at 11,472 at the end of June 2003.

National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF)

To date approximately 8,000 patients have received treatment under the National Treatment Purchase Fund. The Fund has identified capacity both in Ireland and in four hospitals in the UK to treat patients.

“Despite continuing pressure on the acute hospital system the number of patients waiting longest for in-patient treatment continues to fall. The National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) has the available capacity to treat up to 800 patients per month in Ireland and in the UK. There are many patients waiting more than 12 months for treatment at some Dublin hospitals when the NTPF has underutilised capacity to have the majority of these cases treated. If patients feel that they qualify for treatment and they have not been referred to the NTPF by their doctor then I would urge them to contact the NTPF directly on the Lo call number 1890 720 820 to have their treatment arranged.” the Minister said.