Northern Ireland: Consultant-led waiting list times continue to rise

05 July 2019

‘Sustained investment’ is needed to tackle waiting list backlogs, Northern Ireland’s Department of Health has said, as the latest figures reveal another significant increase.


Consultant-led hospital waiting list times have risen 7% since March 2018, while numbers waiting for a diagnostic test are up 22.3%.

A statement from the Department of Health (DoH) said: ‘The waiting times have been building up since 2014 as a result of wider financial pressures facing the health and social care system. With budgets increasingly stretched just to maintain existing services, funding to suppress waiting time growth has been in limited supply.’

According to the DoH, the problems will recur without service transformation: ‘The gap between current capacity and demand will not be bridged in any other way.’ 

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