Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Questions (213)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

213. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Health the number of persons awaiting orthopaedic surgical appointments; the extent to which this number has fluctuated over the past five years to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12615/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I am conscious that waiting times are often unacceptably long and of the burden that this places on patients and their families. In this regard, I am committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

The recently published National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) Waiting List figures show that at the end of February 2019, there are 10,949 patients on the Orthopaedics Inpatient and Daycase (IPDC) waiting list. Of these, 62% (6,837) are waiting 6 months or less, 77% (8,402) are waiting 9 months or less and 15% (1,657) are waiting over 12 months.

Budget 2019 announced that the Government had further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the NTPF increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019.

I published the joint Department of Health, Health Service Executive (HSE) and National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) Scheduled Care Access Plan earlier this week. This Plan sets out a number of commitments aimed at improving access for patients waiting for hospital operations or procedures as well as patients waiting for a first Outpatient appointment.

The data requested by the Deputy is contained in the following table. These figures are published by the NTPF on their website ntpf.ie.

Orthopaedic IPDC Waiting List -Dec 2014 - February 2019

0-3 Months

3-6 Months

6-9 Months

9-12 Months

12-15 Months

15-18 Months

18 + Months

Total

February 2019

3783

3054

1565

890

518

362

777

10949

February 2018

3868

3029

1924

1277

668

496

708

11970

December 2017

4257

2784

1811

1102

637

349

593

11533

December 2016

4330

2608

1923

1164

763

333

110

11272

December 2015

4156

2479

1549

866

500

60

113

9723

December 2014

4099

2565

1564

782

546

183

103

9842